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Free Content Flight Periodicities, Phoresy Rates, and Levels of Pseudopityophthorus minutissimus Branch Colonization in Oak Wilt Centers

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Oak bark beetles, Pseudopityophthorus minutissimus and P. pruinosus, are considered important vectors of the oak wilt fungus, Ceratocystis fagacearum, in Missouri and Ohio. However, the frequency of the species’ association with diseased oaks in Minnesota and their relative importance in pathogen spread in the state are unclear. Window traps were placed in canopies of recently killed northern pin oaks to determine seasonal flight periodicities of dispersing oak bark beetles and their phoresy (pathogen presence) rates. Branch samples were collected from diseased northern pin and northern red oak canopies in May and Aug., life history data obtained, and oak bark beetles emerging from the branches assayed for the pathogen. Only P. minutissimus was found in the study areas. In 2003, peak flight of P. minutissimus in Minnesota occurred 12 May to 19 May, with 869 beetles being trapped. Dispersing beetles carried viable pathogen propagules at low frequencies (4 to 13 per 1,000) in May and June. Branches of oak wilt-killed trees were commonly colonized by the beetle. More beetles emerged from branch samples collected in May than in Aug., but none yielded C. fagacearum. These results support the hypothesis that the relative importance of P. minutissimus in the overland transmission of the pathogen in red oak species in Minnesota is minor.

Keywords: Ceratocystis fagacearum; Oak bark beetles; Quercus ellipsoidalis; Quercus rubra

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-06-01

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  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
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