Skip to main content
Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2010

Climate change and range expansion of an aggressive bark beetle: evidence of higher beetle reproduction in naive host tree populations

Cudmore, T.J.; Björklund, Niklas; Carroll, A.L.; Lindgren, B. Staffan


5. Synthesis and applications. The current study demonstrates that the mountain pine beetle has higher reproductive success in areas where its host trees have not experienced frequent beetle epidemics, which includes much of the current outbreak area in north central British Columbia. This increased productivity of mountain pine beetle is likely to have been a key reason for the rapid population buildup that resulted in unprecedented host tree mortality over huge areas in western Canada. The outbreak thus provides an example of how climate change-driven range expansion of native forest insects can have potentially disastrous consequences. Since an increased reproductive success is likely to accelerate the progression of outbreaks, it is particularly critical to manage forests for the maintenance of a mosaic of species and age classes at the landscape level in areas where host tree populations are naive to eruptive herbivores.


climate change; climatic suitability class; co-evolution; lodgepole pine; mountain pine beetle; range expansion; reproductive success; selection pressure; suitability; susceptibility

Published in

Journal of Applied Ecology
2010, volume: 47, number: 5, pages: 1036-1043

Authors' information

Cudmore, T.J.
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Ecology
Carroll, A.L.
Lindgren, B. Staffan

Associated SLU-program

SLU Network Plant Protection

UKÄ Subject classification

Environmental Sciences

Publication Identifiers


URI (permanent link to this page)