Your browser has javascript turned off or blocked. This will lead to some parts of our website to not work properly or at all. Turn on javascript for best performance.

The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/windows/end-of-ie-support).

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Default user image.

Anna Maria Jönsson

Professor

Default user image.

Population dynamics of the spruce bark beetle: a long-term study

Author

  • Lorenzo Marini
  • Ake Lindelow
  • Anna Maria Jönsson
  • Soeren Wulff
  • Leif Martin Schroeder

Summary, in English

Bark beetle population dynamics is thought to be primarily driven by bottom-up forces affecting insect performance and host tree resistance. Although there are theoretical predictions and empirical evidences that predation and parasitism may play an important role in driving bark beetle population fluctuations, long-term studies testing the role of both biotic and abiotic controls on population dynamics are still rare. The aim of the study was to quantify the relative importance of predation, negative density feedback and abiotic factors in driving Ips typographus population dynamics. We analyzed a unique time series of population density of I. typographus and its main predator Thanasimus formicarius over almost two decades in four regions across Sweden. We used a discrete population model and a multi-model inference approach to evaluate the importance of both bottom up and top down factors. We found that availability of breeding substrates in the form of storm-felled trees was the main outbreak trigger, while strong intra-specific competition for host trees was the main endogenous regulating factor. Although temperature-related metrics are known to have strong individual effect on I. typographus development and number of generations, they did not emerge as important drivers of population dynamics. A positive effect of low summer rainfall was evident only in the region located in the southernmost and warmest part of the spruce distribution range in Sweden. Predator density did not emerge as an important prey regulating factor. As the reported damage from storms seems to have increased across whole Europe, spruce forests are expected to be increasingly susceptible to large outbreaks of I. typographus with important economic and ecological consequences for boreal ecosystems. However, the observed negative density feedback seems to be a natural regulating mechanism that impedes a strong long-term propagation of the outbreaks.

Department/s

  • Dept of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science
  • BECC - Biodiversity and Ecosystem services in a Changing Climate

Publishing year

2013

Language

English

Pages

1768-1776

Publication/Series

Oikos

Volume

122

Issue

12

Document type

Journal article

Publisher

Wiley-Blackwell

Topic

  • Physical Geography

Status

Published

ISBN/ISSN/Other

  • ISSN: 1600-0706