Associations between two bottomland hardwood forest shrew species and hurricane-generated woody debris

R. Brandon Cromer, Charles A. Gresham, Megan Goddard, J. Drew Landham, Hugh G. Hanlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


We investigated associations between soricids and coarse woody debris (CWD) in bottomland hardwood forests impacted by Hurricane Hugo. The objectives were to evaluate CWD loadings at three forests disturbed by Hurricane Hugo, monitor soricid captures at these forests, and identify habitat associates of soricids. Pitfall traps were used to sample soricids from January 2002-December 2003, and habitat parameters (CWD, vegetation, soils, and microsite) surrounding pitfalls were sampled. We found CWD volume was significantly higher at study sites that experienced highest hurricane wind speeds. Captures of soricids were highest in forests with high CWD loadings, and regression models associated soricids with log cover and CWD volume. Sorex longirostris (southeastern shrew) was associated with logs in an advanced state of decay and woody litter. Blarina carolinensis (southern short-tailed shrew)was associated with log cover and leaf-litter cover. Soricid captures also increased with close proximity of CWD. We found that major disturbances have a lasting influence on bottomland hardwood communities, and forests with high loadings of deteriorating CWD provide habitat for S. longirostris and B. carolinensis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)235-246
Number of pages12
JournalSoutheastern Naturalist
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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