Pests

Forest pests (Nova Scotia)
This NSDNR site includes information sheets on specific pests, newsletters and Annual reports (2007 and 2011)

Invasive Alien Species in Nova Scotia
MTRI ( Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute) Identification & Information Guide. 2012 Terrestrial species listed are Norway Maple (Acer platanoides), Oriental Bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus), Beech Bark Disease (Cryptococcus fagisuga, Neonectria spp.), Glossy Buckthorn (Frangula alnus), White Nose Syndrome (Geomyces destructans), Dutch Elm Disease (Hylurgopinus, Ophiostoma spp., & Scotylus spp.), Common Reed (Phragmites australis ssp. australis), Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris), Rugosa Rose (Rosa rugosa). Glossy Buckthorn is prob the biggest threat to forests: “Tolerant of acidic conditions, this species is well adapted to invade a wide variety of natural habitats in Nova Scotia and may represent the greatest threat to plant communities in the province.”

Hemlock Woolly Adelgid is now in SW Nova Scotia

Post on this website, Aug 6, 2017, citing CFIA Press Release The arrival of these “hemlock vampires” in Nova Scotia is not good news.

Hemlock Woolly Adelgid Documentary
Posted YouTube Feb 29, 2016. Cayuga Lake Watershed Network logo is on the video, otherwise, authorship is not indicated.

Shifts in vegetation and avian community structure following the decline of a foundational forest species, the eastern hemlock
M. J., D. A. W. Miller, M. R. Marshall and G. E. Stauffer. 2018. The Condor 120(3): 489-506.”… Species richness of hemlock-associated birds declined by an average of ∼1 species per survey location. The Black-throated Green Warbler (Setophaga virens) was the most strongly affected, declining in occupancy by 30%. All other species groups responded positively, with the strongest responses by species associated with the shrub layer, forest edge, and mature deciduous habitat. The species composition in hemlock and hardwood stands became more similar over time as the unique species assemblages in hemlock stands gave way to the avian community of the surrounding hardwood landscape, highlighting a trend toward homogenization of the avian community.”

Ten Years of Change in Beech Stand in North Central Maine Long Affected with Beech Bark Disease
MSC Thesis by Amada Farrar, University of Maine, 20013. American Beech was once an important component of our mixed Acadian forest but was severely impacted by beech bark disease incited by a scale insect that came to North America via Halifax. This study showed that clearcutting greatly increases mortality of seedlings from and spouts on disease-resistant trees and “demonstrates the importance of protecting resistant trees with uncut “islands” to insure their survival. Also see NS Naturally: Healthy N.S. beech trees spell hope. Article by Jamie Simpson, 2014.

American beech in Point Pleasant Park affected by weevil, Aug 6, 2017.

Beech leaf-mining weevil
Kathleen Ryan on /www.invasiveinsects.ca
“The beech leaf-mining weevil (Orchestes fagi), also known as the beech flea weevil, was first detected in Canada in 2012 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. There it was causing severe defoliation on American beech trees (Fagus grandifolia). Subsequent surveys detected the presence of the insect near Sydney, Nova Scotia as well. The weevil is native to Europe where it is common. Currently, this insect is only known to be established in Nova Scotia, where several counties are infested. Read more. View also: European insects ravaging Nova Scotia beech trees CTV Atlantic July 26, 2017.

Acadia gets research funds for alternatives to pesticides
http://www.kingscountynews.ca/ . July 7, 2017 “The Acadia project is Pan-Atlantic in scope with the participation of a number of federal labs including Natural Resources Canada’s Atlantic Forestry Centre in Fredericton, NB and Corner Brook, NL, universities and private companies, including Forest Protection Ltd. (FPL) and Sylvar Technologies of New Brunswick….The plan is to lead in the commercialization of products including traps, lures and sprays that attract, repulse or confuse the mating behaviour of targeted insects.”

Brown spots a sign of changes to come in Halifax’s tree canopy
CBC Sep 4, 2017. “Tar spot, a fungal infection, not harmful to [Norway Maple] trees in short term, but help limit lifespan”.

Pests that could be heading our way

Big white ash, Halifax area.

Destructive, invasive beetle heading for the Maritimes
Globalnews.ca July 5, 2017 “The Emerald Ash Borer was first introduced in Canada and the United States in 2002 and is now making its way to Nova Scotia.”

Fungus serves as federal sidekick in fight to save forests
National Observer Nov 29, 2017. About a bark test to detect Emerald Ash Borer presence well before visible symptoms appear, and about a fungusthat could be used to control it.

 

Cool weather can amplify attacks of tree-killing bark beetle
Dartmouth College, May 31, 2018 “As a warming climate invites the destructive southern pine beetle to expand its northern range, the cooler weather in this new habitat can potentially increase the lethality of the insect’s assault on trees, according to a new study from Dartmouth College.” Also, on www.pressherald.com, Jun 9, 2018: Cooler climates can raise tree deaths from southern pine beetles. “The insect could reach Nova Scotia by 2020… fall and winter temperatures can heighten the intensity of attacks in the spring, but white pines like those in Maine are usually spared…The southern pine beetle’s primary targets are pitch pines, red pines and jack pines.”

OPINION: Alien invader threatening to devastate Sarnia’s oak trees
November 14, 2017 in the Sarnia Journal
“…It blocks the tree’s vascular system, preventing it from taking in food and water. Wilting starts at the top, works its way down, and within just weeks or months a large and otherwise healthy oak tree is dead. This devastating disease has been heading slowly northward through the eastern U.S. Though it hasn’t been confirmed in Canada yet it has reached St. Clair County in Michigan, just across the river, and Belle Island in the Detroit River….U.S. foresters say no species of oak is immune, but the family of trees known as red oaks is especially vulnerable to infection and death.”

University researchers develop tree disease detection device
Minnesota Daily, dec 7, 2017. “Researchers hope the device will make oak wilt detection cheaper and faster.”

Spruce Budworm

Spruce Budworm on cue
Post on this website, August 18, 2016. The anticipated outbreak of spruce budworm is pretty well on cue (30-40 years between outbreaks), so one might wonder why such planning has not been integral to forest management policies since the end of the last outbreak (1983).

Spray targets 80,000 hectares of N.B. forest as spruce budworm makes inroads
CBC July 21, 2017

Spruce Budworm: An Early Intervention Strategy
Natural Resources Canada video. Transcript also available. “Dr. Rob Johns: This is a new approach to managing spruce budworm outbreaks where we’re essentially controlling hot spots along the leading edge of the outbreak. We’re hoping this is going to slow or perhaps prevent the spread of the outbreak.”

Healthy Forest Partnership
“The Healthy Forest Partnership is a four-year research initiative that started in 2014. We are dedicated to keeping our forest green and healthy by protecting it from spruce budworm”