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Mortality Associated with a Bark Beetle Outbreak in Dwarf Mistletoe-Infested Ponderosa Pine Stands in Arizona

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Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Douglas ex C. Lawson var. scopulorum Engelm.) mortality was evaluated from a 2002 bark beetle outbreak in areas infested with southwestern dwarf mistletoe (Arceuthobium vaginatum [Willd.] Presl subsp. cryptopodum [Engelm.] Hawksw. & Wiens) in a total of nine study sites in northern Arizona. Ponderosa pine mortality attributable to bark beetles (Ips and Dendroctonus spp., Scolytidae) was systematically sampled, and stand attributes, such as basal area, tree density, dwarf mistletoe severity, and site indices were recorded. Ponderosa pine mortality was predominately attributed to Ips spp. Although the prolonged drought likely was the inciting factor responsible for the Ips spp. outbreak, results suggested a strong relationship between ponderosa pine mortality and the interaction between crown class and dwarf mistletoe rating class. Ponderosa pines severely infected with dwarf mistletoe and in the intermediate crown class are at the greatest risk of Ips spp. attack during outbreak years in northern Arizona.

Keywords: Arceuthobium vaginatum; Ips spp; dwarf mistletoe rating; ponderosa pine

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2008

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Western Journal of Applied Forestry covers the western United States, including Alaska, and western Canada; WJAF will also consider manuscripts reporting research in northern Mexico that has potential application in the southwestern United States.
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