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17 August 2023 Time series DNA barcoding provides insight into factors influencing wood-boring and bark-feeding insect communities in Scots pine, Sitka spruce, and Noble fir stands
Sophie de Becquevort, Niall J. Mckeown, Max Blake, Paul W. Shaw
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Abstract

Bark-feeding and wood-boring insect pests can have significant negative impacts on conifers and wood production. The damage they cause is expected to increase in the future due to climate change and the growth of international trade. This study employed DNA barcoding of beetle juveniles (Coleoptera) sampled from standing trap trees and cut log piles at regular intervals over a 2-yr period to monitor the beetle community dynamics and associated environmental factors. Tree species was found to have a major influence on beetle communities, most strikingly at the start of early decay stages. Lower species diversity was reported from standing trap tree samples compared to log pile samples, likely due to higher residual defences in dying and recently dead trees. While the species identified from standing trap trees are more likely to be a threat to the forestry sector, the species found in the log piles are more likely to be beneficial due to their high abundance and their ability to compete with pests for breeding substrate. The analysis of beetles collected inside trees revealed additional information on ontogenetic niches and host preferences beyond that acquired solely from flight interception trap data. Our results offer insights on community composition and dynamics of bark-feeding and wood-boring insect species in Welsh conifer forests and provide resources for monitoring and management of potential pest species.

Sophie de Becquevort, Niall J. Mckeown, Max Blake, and Paul W. Shaw "Time series DNA barcoding provides insight into factors influencing wood-boring and bark-feeding insect communities in Scots pine, Sitka spruce, and Noble fir stands," Environmental Entomology 52(5), 802-813, (17 August 2023). https://doi.org/10.1093/ee/nvad080
Received: 16 April 2023; Accepted: 28 July 2023; Published: 17 August 2023
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KEYWORDS
bark-feeding
conifer
DNA barcoding
larvae
wood-boring
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