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Applying a Spruce Budworm Decision Support System to Maine: Projecting Spruce-Fir Volume Impacts under Alternative Management and Outbreak Scenarios

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Spruce budworm (SBW) infestations and defoliation in forests of eastern North America (e.g., 1910s, 1940s, and 1970‐1980s) have had significant negative impacts on growth and survival of spruce and fir. The Spruce Budworm Decision Support System (SBWDSS), originally developed by the Canadian Forest Service, can assist with SBW management planning by estimating the marginal timber supply (in cubic meters per hectare) benefits of protecting stands against budworm defoliation. We applied the SBWDSS to Maine and for two private forests (≈10,000-ha townships) to assess potential spruce-fir losses. Application of the approach across diverse forest types and data sets revealed dramatic differences in potential volume impacts between the two townships. The statewide analysis suggested that over 4 million ha of Maine's forest are vulnerable to the budworm. Projections of moderate and severe intensity outbreaks reduced statewide spruce-fir inventories by 20‐30% over the next 10 years.

Keywords: Choristoneura fumiferana; Maine; Spruce Budworm Decision Support System; Woodstock; salvage harvesting; scenario analysis; timber supply

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2011

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  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.476
    Ranking: 22 of 66 in forestry

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