The purpose of this study was to identify the species composition of coleopterous predators and their occurrence in different parts of the stem depending on the health condition of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) in the collapsing foci of bark beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae). The research was carried out in 2019–2021 at 38 sample plots located in five State Forestry Enterprises of Sumy region (Ukraine). All sample plots are located in pure Scots pine stands in relatively poor forest site conditions. The relative density of stocking is 0.6–0.7, and the age of stands is between 60 and 110 years. The health condition for each tree was evaluated on visual characteristics by the classes: first – healthy; second – weakened; third – severely weakened; fourth – drying up; fifth – recently died and sixth – died over a year ago. Bark beetles’ nuptial chambers and predators were counted on 25 × 25 cm pallets, which were located at the lower, middle and upper parts of the stem with thin, thick and transitional bark, respectively. The significance of differences in the performance of predator species depending on the tree part, health condition and year was analysed using the nonparametric Kruskal–Wallis (K–W) test. The species composition of predators in different years, stem parts and tree health condition was compared using the Sorensen–Chekanovsky index.
In the collapsing foci of bark beetles, the health condition of Scots pine in 2019–2021 tended to worsen. The infestation density of Ips acuminatus (Gyllenhal, 1827) and Ips sexdentatus (Boerner, 1767) was 0.62 ± 0.032 and 0.64 ± 0.017 nuptial chambers per 1 dm2, respectively, and also decreased in 2019–2021. In the galleries of bark beetles, seven species of coleopterous predators were collected: Aulonium ruficorne (Olivier, 1790) (Zopheridae), Platysoma elongatum (Leach, 1817) (Histeridae), Rhizophagus depressus (Fabricius, 1792) (Monotomidae), Corticeus pini (Panzer, 1799) (Tenebrionidae), Thanasimus formicarius (Linnaeus, 1758), Thanasimus femoralis (Zetterstedt, 1828) (Cleridae) and Salpingus ruficollis (Linnaeus, 1761) (Salpingidae). Two more species – Glischrochilus quadripunctatus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Nitidulidae) and Pytho depressus (Linnaeus, 1767) (Pythidae) – were singly collected in the foci. T. formicarius and P. elongatum were the most abundant. The ratio of predator–prey significantly increased from the upper to the lower part of the stem with thick bark. It, however, decreased in this stem part from the fourth to the sixth class of the health condition of the host tree.
|Source||Folia Forestalia Polonica, Series A – Forestry|
|Type of article
||Coleopterous predators of pine bark beetles in the last years of the outbreak recorded in Ukraine|
|Publisher||The Committee on Forestry Sciences and Wood Technology of the Polish Academy of Sciences and the Forest Research Institute in Sekocin Stary|