Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Wildland Resources

Department name when degree awarded

Forest Resources

Committee Chair(s)

Michael J. Jenkins


Michael J. Jenkins


Dave Roberts


John Bissonette


The 1994 Beaver Mountain fire ignited the canopies of subalpine fir, Abies lasiocarpa, and spread ground fire into adjacent Douglas-fir forests, Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca. Despite shorter flight seasons due to lower annual temperatures and persistent snow, the Douglas-fir bark beetle, Dendroctonus pseudotsugae Hopkins, attacked a range of moderately fire-injured host conifers. Logistic regression models illustrated that in 1995 associated bark beetles selected large diameter Douglas-fir with 60-80% bole char, 60-80% crown volume scorch, and 50-70% probability of mortality due to fire. In 1996 beetle preference shifted to smaller diameter trees with lighter fire injury. Tree size was less significant for predicted attack in 1996 because most large fire-damaged conifers were colonized by beetles in 1995. Beetle populations did not reach outbreak proportions outside the fire boundary, but 53 green trees were also infested in 1997 along the burn perimeter.

Log linear tests conducted to quantify beetle emergence supported conclusions that beetles were not only attracted to mature, moderately fire-weakened conifers, but also produced greater brood numbers with up to 60-80 emergence holes/ 1800 cm2. Fire-defoliated trees provided bark beetles with sufficient phloem and limited resistance, allowing beetles to aggregate on areas of viable stem tissue regardless of overall bole char extent.