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Verbenone-releasing flakes protect individual Pinus contorta trees from attack by Dendroctonus ponderosae and Dendroctonus valens (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Scolytinae)

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1 In a study site in interior northern California, twenty individual lodgepole pines Pinus contorta were sprayed with a suspension of DISRUPT Micro-Flake® Verbenone (4,6,6-trimethylbicyclo(3.1)hept-3-en-2-one) Bark Beetle Anti-Aggregant flakes (Hercon Environmental, Emigsville, Pennsylvania) in water, with sticker and thickener, from ground level to a height of 7 m. Twenty trees sprayed with just water, sticker and thickener served as controls. All trees were baited immediately after spraying with mountain pine beetle Dendroctonus ponderosae aggregation pheromone lures, and lures were refreshed after 4 weeks.

2 Trees treated with verbenone had significantly lower attack density by D. ponderosae than controls at 2, 4, 6 and 8 weeks after application of flakes.

3 None of the treated trees was attacked by red turpentine beetle Dendroctonus valens, whereas control trees averaged nearly two D. valens attacks per tree, 8 weeks after treatment.

4 A dry frass index, used to predict ultimate tree mortality, was significantly higher in control trees than treated trees for all four sampling intervals. This index proved to be a significant predictor of ultimate tree mortality.

5 Ten months after application, treated trees showed significantly lower mortality than control trees.

Keywords: 4,6,6-trimethylbicyclo(3.1)hept-3-en-2-one; Individual tree protection; Pinaceae; Scolytidae; Scolytinae; lodgepole pine; mountain pine beetle; pheromones; red turpentine beetle; semiochemicals

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: USDA Forest Service, Forest Health Technology, Morgantown, WV 26505, U.S.A., 2: California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Redding, CA 96002, U.S.A., 3: Total Forestry, Anderson, CA 96007, U.S.A., 4: USDA Forest Service, Redding Silviculture Laboratory, Redding, CA 96002, U.S.A. and 5: Dept. Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, U.S.A.

Publication date: August 1, 2006


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