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Forest Health: Pest and disease impacts in response to climate change

Presented by Libby Pinkard, CSIRO, Wednesday 4 December 2013.

In general we have a poor understanding of the rotation length impacts of pest damage on plantation performance in Australia, due to lack of empirical data particularly following later-age pest damage.

In this webinar the results of a modelling analysis of pest impacts in temperate eucalypts and pines will be presented. Defoliation thresholds were identified for a range of site types and soil fertility levels, and the role of pattern, frequency, age and season of defoliation was examined. Using the forest productivity model CABALA , rotation length impacts of defoliation of Eucalyptus globulus and Pinus radiata plantations in southern Australia were analysed.

The objectives of the report were to (1) identify damage thresholds above which plantation productivity would be affected; (2) determine the effects of timing, frequency and pattern of defoliation on these thresholds; and (3) examine how thresholds are affected by site productivity and climate. It will provide a good overview of the current forest operations research in Australia and hopes to facilitate discussion about how to make the effort of change achievable.

Presenter:
Dr Libby Pinkard is a principal research scientist with CSIRO, Ecosystem Sciences, who has worked extensively on impacts of pests on plantation productivity, including the interaction of pest damage with other stresses (such as water or nutrient) or rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Libby currently heads a FWPA project examining risks and impacts of climate change for Australia’s temperate plantations.

 

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