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Firewood collected after a catastrophic wind event: the bark beetle (Scolytinae) and woodborer (Buprestidae, Cerambycidae) community present over a 3-year period

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Abstract

  1. An EF 3 tornado created a 63-km path through urban and forested areas of western Massachusetts, U.S.A., on 1 June 2011.
  2. We collected ash, birch, maple, oak and pine logs from the tornado blowdown, once per year, over a 3-year period and split these into firewood sized pieces. Firewood was then placed into rearing barrels and insects were collected for 1 year.
  3. An estimated 38 121 beetles from 42 species of Buprestidae, Cerambycidae and Curculionidae: Scolytinae were reared from firewood over the 3-year period. The most abundant species collected included Hylesinus aculeatus Say (85% of total), Xyleborinus attenuatus (Blandford) (3.9%) and Monarthrum mali (Fitch) (3.6%).
  4. The largest abundance of insects was found from ash in 2012 and 2014, and from maple in 2013. Species richness was highest in oak in 2012 and 2013, and in birch and pine in 2014.
  5. Four species of exotic xyleborines [Cyclorhipidion pelliculosum (Eichhoff), X. attenuatus, Xyleborinus saxesenii and Xylosandrus germanus (Bladford)] were reared out of every firewood genus and accounted for a large proportion of the Scolytinae captured.
  6. Potential new host associations include the Cerambycidae Astylopsis macula (Say) in red pine, the Scolytinae Gnathotrichus materiarius (Fitch) in hardwoods, and M. mali, X. attenuatus and X. saxesenii in ash.
  7. Firewood harvested from a large scale disturbance in northeastern hardwood forests produced large numbers of insects, even 3 years after the disturbance.

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