Bark beetle outbreaks have resulted in the loss of hundreds of thousands of conifers on approximately 30 million hectares of forested lands in western North America during the last decade. Many forests remain susceptible to bark beetle infestation and will continue to experience high levels of conifer mortality until suitable host trees are depleted, or natural factors cause populations to collapse. Stand conditions and drought, combined with warming temperatures, have contributed to the severity of these outbreaks, particularly in high-elevation forests.

Conventional wisdom suggests that large scale bark beetle outbreaks alter fuel complexes resulting in an increased potential for severe fires. Conversely, fires damage trees that may predispose them to bark beetle attack. In reality there is little specific quantified data supporting these assertions, and until recently, relationships between fire and western bark beetles in forests of North America have not been extensively studied. The magnitude of recent outbreaks and large wildfires has resulted in a flurry of research attempting to quantify bark beetle/fire/fuel interactions.
 
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2010

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Fuel Complex Alterations Associated with Spruce Beetle-Induced Tree Mortality in Intermountain Spruce-Fir Forests, USA, Carl Arik Jorgensen and Michael James Jenkins; Forest Science

2009

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Influence of fire and mountain pine beetle on the dynamics of lodgepole pine stands in British Columbia, Canada, Jodi N. Axelson, Rene I. Alfaro, and Brad C. Hawkes; Forest Ecology and Management

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Wildfire and Spruce Beetle Outbreak: Simulation of Interacting Disturbances in the Central Rocky Mountains, Justin DeRose and James N. Long; Ecoscience

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Mountain Pine Beetle, Ken Gibson, Sandy Kegley, and Barbara Bentz; Forest Insect and Disease Leaflet

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Stand Characteristics and Downed Woody Debris Accumulations Associated with a Mountain Pine Beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins) Outbreak in Colorado, Jennifer G. Klutsch, Jose F. Negron, Sheryl L. Costello, Charles C. Rhoades, Daniel R. West, John Popp, and Rick Caissie; Forest Ecology and Management

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Variability in Fire Regimes of High-Elevation Whitebark Pine Communities, Western Montana, USA, Evan R. Larson, Saskia L. Van De Gevel, and Henri D. Grissino-Mayer; Ecoscience

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Bark beetle-caused mortality in a drought-affected ponderosa pine landscape in Arizona, USA, J. F. Negrón, J. D. McMillin, J. D. Anhold, and D. Coulson; Forest Ecology and Management

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Response of bark beetles and their natural enemies to fire and fire surrogate treatments in mixed-conifer forests in western Montana, Diana L. Six and Kjerstin Skov; Forest Ecology and Management

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Delayed Conifer Mortality After Fuel Reduction Treatments: Interactive Effects of Fuel, Fire Intensity, and Bark Beetles, Andrew Youngblood, James B. Grace, James B. Grace, James B. Grace, and James D. McIver; Ecological Applications

2008

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Prescribed Fire Effects on Bark Beetle Activity and Tree Mortality in Southwestern Ponderosa Pine Forests, C. R. Breece, T. E. Kolb, B. G. Dickson, J. D. McMillin, and K. M. Clancy; Forest Ecology and Management

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Effects of Prescribed Fire and Other Plant Community Restoration Treatments on Tree Mortality, Bark Beetles, and Other Saproxylic Coleoptera of Longleaf Pine, Pinus palustris Mill., on the Coastal Plain of Alabama, Joshua W. Campbell, James L. Hanula, and Kenneth W. Outcalt; Forest Ecology and Management

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Developing Fire Behavior Fuel Models for the Wildland–Urban Interface in Anchorage, Alaska, Daniel Cheyette, T. Scott Rupp, and Sue Rodman; Western Journal of Applied Forestry

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Climate Factors Associated with Historic Spruce Beetle (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) Outbreaks in Utah and Colorado, Elizabeth G. Hebertson and Michael J. Jenkins; Environmental Entomology

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Bark Beetles, Fuels, Fires and Implications for Forest Management in the Intermountain West, Michael J. Jenkins, Elizabeth Hebertson, Wesley Page, and C. Arik Jorgensen; Forest Ecology and Management

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Annotated Bibliography for Forest Managers on Fire-Bark Beetle Interactions, Martin Simard, Erinn N. Powell, Jacob M. Griffin, Kenneth F. Raffa, and Monica G. Turner; USFS Western Wildlands Environmental Threats Assessment Center

2007

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Fire, fuels, and restoration of ponderosa pine-Douglas-fir forests in the Rocky Mountains, W. L. Baker, T. T. Veblen, and R. L. Sherriff; Journal Biogeography

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Fire, fuels, and restoration of ponderosa pine-Douglas-fir forests in the Rocky Mountains, USA, W. L. Baker, T. T. Veblen, and R. L. Sherriff; Journal of Biogeography

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The Effectiveness of Vegetation Management Practices for Prevention and Control of Bark Beetle Infestations in Coniferous Forests of the Western and Southern United States, Christopher J. Fettig, Ronald F. Billings, A. Steven Munson, T. Evan Nebeker, and Jose F. Negrón; Forest Ecology and Management

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Effectiveness of Vegetation Management Practices for Prevention and Control of Bark Beetle Infestations in Coniferous Forests of the Western and Southern United States, Christopher J. Fettig, Kier D. Klepzig, Ronald F. Billings, A. Steven Munson, T. Evan Nebeker, Jose F. Negron, and John T. Nowak; Forest Ecology and Management

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Influence of Fallen Tree Timing on Spruce Beetle Brood Production, Elizabeth G. Hebertson and Michael J. Jenkins; Western North American Naturalist

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Predicting Postfire Douglas-Fir Beetle Attacks and Tree Mortality in the Northern Rocky Mountains, Sharon Hood and Barbara Bentz; Canadian Jorunal of Forest Research

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Relative Influence of Diseases and Other Small-Scale Disturbances on Fuel Loading in the Black Hills, J E. Lundquist; Plant Disease

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Fire climbing in the forest: A semiqualitative, approach to assessing ladder fuel hazards, K. M. Menning and S. L. Stephens; Western Journal of Applied Forestry

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Mountain Pine Beetle-Induced Changes to Selected Lodgepole Pine Fuel Complexes within the Intermountain Region, Wesley G. Page and Michael J. Jenkins; Forest Science

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Predicted Fire Behavior in Selected Mountain Pine Beetle-Infected Lodgepole Pine, Wesley Page and Michael J. Jenkins; Forest Science