Climate-Induced Northerly Expansion of Siberian Silkmoth Range
Viacheslav I. Kharuk
Sergei T. Im
Kenneth J. Ranson
Mikhail N. Yagunov
Институт космических и информационных технологий
Институт экологии и географии
Базовая кафедра геоинформационных систем
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Bibliographic Citation:Viacheslav I. Kharuk. Climate-Induced Northerly Expansion of Siberian Silkmoth Range [Текст] / Viacheslav I. Kharuk, Sergei T. Im, Kenneth J. Ranson, Mikhail N. Yagunov // Forests. — 2017. — Т. 8 (№ 8).
Siberian silkmoth (Dendrolimus sibiricus Tschetv.) is a dangerous pest that has affected nearly 2.5 × 106 ha of “dark taiga” stands (composed of Abies sibirica, Pinus sibirica and Picea obovata) within the latitude range of 52°–59° N. Here we describe a current silkmoth outbreak that is occurring about half degree northward of its formerly documented outbreak range. This outbreak has covered an area of about 800 thousand ha with mortality of conifer stands within an area of about 300 thousand ha. The primary outbreak originated in the year 2014 within stands located on gentle relatively dry southwest slopes at elevations up to 200 m above sea level (a.s.l.) Then the outbreak spread to the mesic areas including northern slopes and the low-elevation forest belts along the Yenisei ridge. Within the outbreak area, the northern Siberian silkmoth population has reduced generation length from two to one year. Our study showed that the outbreak was promoted by droughts in prior years, an increase of the sum of daily temperatures (t > +10 °C), and a decrease in ground cover moisture. Within the outbreak area, secondary pests were also active, including the aggressive Polygraphus proximus bark borer beetle. The outbreak considered here is part of the wide-spread (panzonal) Siberian silkmoth outbreak that originated during 2014–2015 with a range of up to 1000 km in southern Siberia. Our work concludes that observed climate warming opens opportunities for Siberian silkmoth migration into historically outbreak free northern “dark taiga” stands.
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