In central Amazonia, bird community studies have been concentrated in primary forest and forest fragments, mostly in conjunction with the Biological Dynamics of Forest Fragments Project (BDFFP), a large-scale experimental project on the effects of fragmentation on forest communities including birds, mammals, and plants (Bierregaard and Lovejoy 1989, Bierregaard et al. 1992, Stouffer and Bierregaard 1995a, 1995b). During the process of establishing the BDFFP study sites on large private farms, extensive areas of primary forest were cleared, and in some cases burned. The process of clearing instigated two major types of regrowth: a Cecropia-dominated community that normally regenerates in the absence of fire, and a Vismiadominated community that regenerates where fire was frequently used to manage these grasslands.
This study compared the bird community of these two types of successional forest. We describe general patterns in species richness and abundance considering the following questions:
What bird species occur in each type of second ary growth? Is the similarity in bird assemblages affected by the type of regrowth? Are there differences in species richness and abundance of birds among sites? Do bird guilds differ in species composition and abundance in the two types of secondary forest?