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Landscape-scale treatment promising for slowing beetle spread
Date:2/2/2009

pine beetles when applied to low to moderate beetle populations," said Nancy Gillette, a Forest Service scientist at the Pacific Southwest Research Station and one of nine researchers involved in the study. "Higher beetle populations will probably require higher application rates."

Gillette and her colleagues speculated that flakes released from the air might better disperse and simulate natural beetle release than large, manually-applied verbenone packets so they used helicopters to release flakes.

They treated 10 plots at two sites, one near Mount Shasta in Northern California and another in Idaho's Bitterroot Mountains. The sites had similar tree densities and existing rates of infestations. Helicopters dropped flakes on half of the plots and left the others untreated, with application rates of about 9.7 flakes per square meter.

The treatments reduced the level of attack to about a third of that in untreated plots in both California and Idaho. Future studies will test a biodegradable formulation of the flakes.


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Contact: Roland Giller
rgiller@fs.fed.us
510-559-6327
US Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station
Source:Eurekalert

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