The Mountain Region of North Carolina has many distinctive biotic features resulting from the moist, cooler climate of high and mid elevations. This becomes quite pronounced in the bird life of the region where many nesting species with centers of distribution in New England and Canada abound. An excellent review of the bird life of the region is provided by Simpson (1992, Birds of the Blue Ridge Mountains, University of NC Press, Chapel Hill). Bird communities which we consider in the Southeast to be montane are actually relicts from the Pleistocene and recent period when they were the dominant species throughout the Southeast. While this northern element is currently linked to species of the boreal and transition forest of the northern portion of North America, this pattern of distribution is actually very recent. In other words, these are southeastern species that invaded the northern portion of the continent in the wake of retreating glaciers. Download the Mountain Region from the 2011 eBook.
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