Manuel Spinola, Ph.D
Organization: Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica
Location: Northern Costa Rica
Research: Effects of Logging and Silvicultural Treatments on Mammal and Bird Communities in a Tropical Humid Forest of Costa Rica
Species/Topic: Mammals and Birds of Costa Rica
Abstract: Logging is among the most severe disturbances affecting the ecological integrity of the Mesoamerican tropical forests, a hot spot of biodiversity. Consequently, in recent years sustainability in forest management has shifted form sustaining the yield in one resource to sustaining the ecosystem in which that resource is produced. This new paradigm promotes forest use from an ecological perspective by minimizing the impact on forest integrity and its biodiversity. However, the biological and physical consequences of tropical forest logging under different silvicultural practices remain to be evaluated. This study proposes to use mammal and birds as representative models of the forest animal biota to study the effects of forest logging and silvicultural practices on forest biodiversity. We will assess demographics and community parameters on mammals and birds in forest areas under logging and different silvicultural practices. The results of this research will provide valuable information to forest managers to consider effects of various logging practices on animal diversity when planning timber harvests.