Canadian Forest Service Publications

Putting healthy beech on the map. 2013. Taylor, A.R. Atlantic Forestry Review 20(1): 38–41.

Year: 2013

Available from: Atlantic Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 34956

Language: English

CFS Availability: Not available through the CFS (click for more information).

Abstract

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Plain Language Summary

In this paper, we provide the first formal, empirical estimate of beech bark disease (BBD) resistance over a wide geographical area where BBD has been prevalent for longest in North America. We conducted our study in the eastern Canadian Maritime provinces. Across our study area, the average percentage of disease-free beech trees observed was 3.3%. However, the incidence of disease-free beech varied significantly geographically, with the oldest, most southerly time-since-incidence (TSI) zone indicating 2.2% and the youngest, most northerly TSI zone showing 5.7%. The geographic variation of disease-free beech trees observed may reflect disease exposure time. Alternatively, lower minimum winter temperatures, combined with less intensive land-use history also may also explain our observations. Further investigation of this hypothesis in other northern forest areas where BBD has been present for a long time (e.g., northern Maine and Vermont) is required. Given that climate change is anticipated to increase the average minimum winter temperature in the Maritimes region over the next 50 years, increases in BBD-related mortality in northern New Brunswick may be expected. Our estimates of BBD resistance will be useful for natural resource managers in efforts to restore beech across its native range.

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