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Effects of green tree retention, prescribed burning and soil treatment on pine weevil (Hylobius abietis and Hylobius pinastri) damage to planted Scots pine seedlings

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1 Feeding damage and mortality caused to planted Scots pine seedlings by the pine weevils Hylobius abietis and Hylobius pinastri were studied on burned and unburned sites with 0, 10 and 50 m3 per hectare levels of green tree retention from the second to the fourth summer after logging and burning of the sites.

2 The rate of severe feeding damage to pine seedlings caused by pine weevils was higher on burned clearcut sites than on unburned ones, whereas burning did not increase the feeding damage rate on sites with groups of retention trees. The damage rate in the fourth summer was approximately the same on burned and unburned sites.

3 Pine weevil feeding was the major cause of mortality of freshly planted pine seedlings on unburned sites. On burned sites, mortality was higher than the rate of severe feeding damage, particularly in the second summer after burning, possibly owing to fungal attack and abiotic factors.

4 At a retention tree level of 50 m3, feeding damage to the seedlings was lower than on clearcuts and at a 10 m3 retention tree level. Furthermore, on sites with 50 m3 of retention trees, scarification of the soil was found to decrease feeding damage more effectively than on clearcuts and 10 m3 sites. If the seedlings were situated in the centre of scarified patches, scarification alone was as effective as insecticide treatment on unscarified soil for decreasing feeding damage and mortality.

5 The results suggest that when burning is applied as silvicultural treatment after clear-cuts, retention of trees is recommended to reduce the damages caused by pine weevils on pine seedlings.
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Keywords: Feeding damage; Hylobius abietis; Scots pine seedling; pine weevil; prescribed burning

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Finnish Forest Research Institute, Joensuu Research Centre, PO Box 68, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland.

Publication date: 2005-11-01

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