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Research article2022Peer reviewedOpen access

Thermal sum requirements for development and flight initiation of new-generation spruce bark beetles based on seasonal change in cuticular colour of trapped beetles

Fritscher, Danja; Schroeder, Martin


The spruce bark beetle Ips typographus is the most important pest on Norway spruce in Europe. To improve predictions of bark beetle phenology in a warmer climate, correct thermal sums representing the development time of the new generation are needed. A standardized method for classifying adults into five different colours was used for describing the seasonal change in colour of beetles in breeding substrate and in weekly trap catches from regions located in southern, central and northern Sweden in 2015-2020. Repeated sampling of I. typographus from breeding substrate demonstrated that the adults get gradually darker, from light brown when newly moulted to dark brown or black in the following summer. In spring, four to five colours co-occurred among trapped beetles. Over time, the proportions of darker individuals increased until the two lightest colours were absent except for 2 cases out of 21 trapping locations/years. Thereafter, the individuals of the two lightest colours started to occur again, indicating that they belonged to the new generation. The average thermal sum from start of flight of parental generation in spring until onset of new-generation flight in summer was higher for southern Sweden [lower developmental threshold (LDT) 5 degrees C = 744 degree-days (dd); LDT 8.3 degrees C = 467 dd] than for northern Sweden (LDT 5 degrees C = 668 dd; LDT 8.3 degrees C = 418 dd). New-generation flight occurred in every year and region, but generally constituted only a small proportion of total seasonal flight activity.


brood development; cuticle colour change; degree days; flight activity; Ips typographus; pheromone traps; population dynamics; spruce bark beetle; temperature models; voltinism

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Agricultural and Forest Entomology
2022, Volume: 24, number: 3, pages: 405-421
Publisher: WILEY

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