Moisture Stress Threshold of Susceptibility to Fir Engraver Beetles in Pole-Size White Firs

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The moisture stress threshold of susceptibility in white fir to fir engraver beetles appears to be about -20 bars. In trees which were severed and braced upright to induce moisture stress, caged beetles could successfully mine and reproduce when dawn xylem pressure potentials (P) measured by pressure chamber, fell to that level, and little host resinosis occurred in response to the beetle attacks. In girdled and intact trees with P above -20 bars, however, extensive resinosis occurred and beetles could excavate only short, reproductively unsuccessful mines. The pressure chamber technique used to measure P appears to be useful for identifying white firs that are resistant or susceptible to fir engraver attacks. Forest Sci. 24:85-92.

Keywords: Abies concolor; Scolytus ventralis; host resistance; pressure chamber; water relations

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Research Entomologist, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station, USDA Forest Service, Berkeley, California

Publication date: March 1, 1978

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