Impact of Prescribed Fire and Thinning on Host Resistance to the Southern Pine Beetle: Preliminary Results of the National Fire and Fire Surrogate StudyThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The southern pine beetle ( Dendroctonus frontalis Zimm.) is considered one of the most aggressive insect pests in the Southern United States. Resistance to southern pine beetle infestations in southern pines depends largely on oleoresin flow rate and total flow. Treatments, such as prescribed fire and thinning, can be used to reduce stand infestation susceptibil-ity by increasing the vigor of residual pines. This study examines the short term effect of prescribed fire and thinning on pine vigor and degree of southern pine beetle incidence. Pine vigor and beetle incidence data were compiled during the summer and fall of 2001 during a severe southern pine beetle outbreak. Although there were no significant short-term treatment effects on pine vigor or beetle incidence, 24-resin weight was found to be inversely related to both size of beetle infestations and number of beetles trapped in each stand. Direct relationships found between 24-resin weight and recent 5-year latewood percentages may indicate that increased host vigor is associated with increased area of latewood.