JOURNAL ARTICLE

Population densities and tree diameter effects associated with verbenone treatments to reduce mountain pine beetle-caused mortality of lodgepole pine

R A Progar, D C Blackford, D R Cluck, S Costello, L B Dunning, T Eager, C L Jorgensen, A S Munson, B Steed, M J Rinella
Journal of Economic Entomology 2013, 106 (1): 221-8
23448035
Mountain pine beetle, Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae), is among the primary causes of mature lodgepole pine, Pinus contorta variety latifolia mortality. Verbenone is the only antiaggregant semiochemical commercially available for reducing mountain pine beetle infestation of lodgepole pine. The success of verbenone treatments has varied greatly in previous studies because of differences in study duration, beetle population size, tree size, or other factors. To determine the ability of verbenone to protect lodgepole pine over long-term mountain pine beetle outbreaks, we applied verbenone treatments annually for 3 to 7 yr at five western United States sites. At one site, an outbreak did not develop; at two sites, verbenone reduced lodgepole pine mortality in medium and large diameter at breast height trees, and at the remaining two sites verbenone was ineffective at reducing beetle infestation. Verbenone reduced mountain pine beetle infestation of lodgepole pine trees in treated areas when populations built gradually or when outbreaks in surrounding untreated forests were of moderate severity. Verbenone did not protect trees when mountain pine beetle populations rapidly increase.

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