Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation


Interactions Between Wild Bee Communities and Douglas-fir Beetle (Dendroctonus pseudotsugae) Populations in Douglas-fir (Pseudotsugae menziezii) Forests of the Intermountain West Public Deposited

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  • This work combines both applied and basic research regarding previously undescribed relationships between two ecologically and economically important insect groups in coniferous forests, bark beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Scolytinae) and wild bee (Hymenoptera: Apiformes) communities in Western North America. Across the continent, native bark beetle outbreaks are key drivers of structural changes to plant communities and large-scale biomes. Despite their general status as forest pests, bark beetles and their episodic population outbreaks can move forests back to early successional stages that can ultimately benefit plant and animal communities. Their potential to modify or create habitat for other ecologically important groups, such as insect pollinators, is especially relevant given recent declines in pollinator populations globally. One objective of this research was to assess the efficacy of a novel formulation of the Douglas-fir beetle, Dendroctonus pseudotsugae Hopkins (DFB), anti-aggregation pheromone, 3-methlyclyclohex-2-en-1-one (MCH) for protecting Douglas-fir, Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco, trees and stands from DFB infestation and subsequent mortality. Because other methylcyclohexanones have been shown to repel certain bee species in other systems, additional experiments were conducted to assess whether MCH repels resident bee communities in treated areas. The responses of resident bee community assemblages to structural changes in their forest habitat caused by DFB was also determined within a Douglas-fir forest in southeastern Idaho, USA.
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