Summary 1 Attack density and breeding success of bark beetles (Coleoptera: Scolytidae) and the abundance of their predators were studied at forest-clearcut edges in southern Finland on Norway spruce, Picea abies, bolts placed at different distances from a forest-clearcut edge. 2 Attack densities of two species, Hylurgops palliatus and H. glabratus, increased markedly towards the forest interior. The breeding success of H. palliatus was increased with increasing distance from the stand edge. None of the recorded 10 bark beetle species was distinctly abundant near the edge, but Pityogenes chalcographus appeared to prefer this zone. 3 There were no significant differences in numbers of bark beetle predators between the forest interior and the edge. Forest-clearcut edge had a significant effect on the desiccation of sample bolts. 4 Thus, forest edge is likely to affect the colonization behaviour and breeding success of bark beetles via host material properties.