"You don't get a lot of direct mortality from hurricanes," says Larry Perrin, a biologist for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. "But you can see a lot of localized problems, with reduced nesting opportunities from all that downed timber." A hurricane can turn a forest and grassland habitat-ideal for nesting birds and poults-into a tangled mess of downed timber, weeds, and brush. "The birds can't move through it easily, and they can't see above it, so predation goes way up," Perrin explains. In the aftermath of Hurricane Hugo in 1989, about one-half of the turkey habitat was destroyed and the turkey population was decimated in South Carolina's Francis Marion National Forest.