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Title: Host resistance screening for balsam woolly adelgid: A comparison of seedlings from 12 fir species

Author: Newton, Leslie; Frampton, John; Hain, Fred;

Date: 2012

Source: In: Sniezko, Richard A.; Yanchuk, Alvin D.; Kliejunas, John T.; Palmieri, Katharine M.; Alexander, Janice M.; Frankel, Susan J., tech. coords. Proceedings of the fourth international workshop on the genetics of host-parasite interactions in forestry: Disease and insect resistance in forest trees. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-240. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. pp. 190-193

Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description:

The balsam woolly adelgid, Adelges piceae (Hemiptera: Adelgidae) (BWA), first reported on Fraser fir, Abies fraseri (Pursh) Poiret, on Mount Mitchell in 1955 (Amman 1966, Boyce 1955), is a major pest in Christmas tree plantations and in native stands. Nearly all Fraser fir Christmas trees produced in North Carolina need to be treated one or more times during their 5- to 10-year rotation to prevent or lessen damage caused by this adelgid. These chemical treatments cost the industry over 1.5 million dollars per year (Potter et al. 2005) and may compromise the effectiveness of integrated pest management systems. The development of BWA-resistant Fraser fir trees would be a relatively inexpensive solution to a difficult pest problem and would minimize adverse effects from management strategies.

The balsam woolly adelgid, specific to the genus Abies, reproduces through parthenogenesis and completes two or more generations per year (Arthur and Hain 1984, Balch 1952). The early phase of the first instar (crawler) is the only motile stage. Feeding sites are chosen for accessibility to parenchyma cells (Balch 1952) and, once settled, the adelgid remains fairly sessile for the remainder of its life. Susceptibility to BWA varies among Abies species. Host responses include gouting (abnormal cell growth resembling a gall) at the feeding site, loss of apical dominance, and the production of abnormal xylem ('redwood' or 'rotholtz').

In the 100+ years that BWA has been in North America, studies on its biology and interaction with host trees have been conducted in the Pacific Northwest, Canada, and the Southern Appalachians on multiple fir species of different ages, utilizing various sources of the adelgid. Three subspecies of BWA have been identified in North America (Foottit and Mackauer 1983). Our long-term objective is to develop BWA-resistant Fraser fir trees for the Christmas tree industry and native stand restoration. Our objective for this study was to screen for resistance across multiple fir species utilizing trees of equal age, grown under the same conditions and infested with BWA from the same source, and to observe the reactions of both host and insect.

Keywords: forest disease and insect resistance, evolutionary biology, climate change, durable resistance

Publication Notes:

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  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

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Citation:


Newton, Leslie; Frampton, John; Hain, Fred. 2012. Host resistance screening for balsam woolly adelgid: A comparison of seedlings from 12 fir species. In: Sniezko, Richard A.; Yanchuk, Alvin D.; Kliejunas, John T.; Palmieri, Katharine M.; Alexander, Janice M.; Frankel, Susan J., tech. coords. Proceedings of the fourth international workshop on the genetics of host-parasite interactions in forestry: Disease and insect resistance in forest trees. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-240. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. pp. 190-193.

 


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