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Harvard Forest Symposium Abstract 2020

  • Title: Impacts of Asian Longhorned Beetle and Associated Eradication Efforts on the Current Composition of Forests
  • Primary Author: Olivia Box (University of Vermont (UVM))
  • Additional Authors: Anthony D'Amato (University of Vermont (UVM)); Kevin Dodds (USDA Forest Service)
  • Abstract:

    Impacts of Asian Longhorned Beetle and Associated Eradication Efforts on Forest Composition and Structure

    Olivia Box1, Anthony D’Amato1, Kevin Dodds2
    University of Vermont Rubenstein School of Natural Resources1
    United States Forest Service, Durham, NH2 | 81 Carrigan Drive Burlington, VT 05404
    21 February 2020

    Asian longhorned beetle, Anoplophora glabripennis (ALB), is an invasive forest pest that entered southern New England in 2008. Eradication efforts required the removal of all host trees, primarily Acer rubrum and A. saccharum, from invaded areas. Three primary treatments were used to address ALB: i) removal of all host species, ii) removal of all host species and stump removal, and iii) removal of all host species and herbicide treatment. These treatments were central to ALB eradication efforts in Worcester County, MA but it is unclear how this disturbance affected forest composition and structure and how these areas will progress over time following various management schemes. In 2018, sites treated for ALB were sampled following USFS Forest Health Monitoring protocols with the herbaceous layer, tree seedlings and saplings, coarse woody material, and overstory trees quantified in each stand. Red maple was the most abundant seedling and sapling overall but there was variation across forest type and treatment type. Invasive species represented a small component of the herbaceous layer and were highest in sites treated with herbicide. To provide broader context on the impacts of ALB across the northeastern US, ALB invaded sites in Clermont county, Ohio were sampled in 2019 to construct a comparison of forests post-eradication management. Comparisons between sites from the Massachusetts and Ohio quarantines suggest important differences in potential outcomes of ALB management. In particular, observational data from Ohio showed that there was a 91% increase in invasive species in the herbaceous layer compared to Worcester sites. These findings are particularly relevant as ALB invasions continue to be high-risk in areas across the United States, particularly in areas with host species and ports.

  • Research Category: Invasive Plants, Pests & Pathogens, Conservation and Management