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Influence of Hemlock Woolly Adelgid Infestation Levels on Water Stress in Eastern Hemlocks within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, U.S.A.

1
Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA
2
Department of Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA
3
USDA Forest Service, Forest Health Protection, 200 Weaver Boulevard, Asheville, NC 28804, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Jarmo K. Holopainen and Eric J. Jokela
Forests 2015, 6(1), 271-279; https://doi.org/10.3390/f6010271
Received: 13 August 2014 / Accepted: 3 December 2014 / Published: 20 January 2015
Extensive mortality of eastern hemlock, Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carrière, resulting from infestation by hemlock woolly adelgid, Adelges tsugae Annand (Hemiptera: Adelgidae), has occurred throughout the eastern United States. Although imidacloprid treatment can reduce tree mortality, its effectiveness can be influenced by several factors including tree water stress. The relationship between water stress and infestation rates is unknown, and an understanding of these could greatly increase the efficiency of management for this invasive insect. The primary objective of this study was to assess water stress at three levels of hemlock woolly adelgid infestations. Water stress was measured monthly for 13 months in eastern hemlocks classified as <25%, 25%–75%, and >75% infested. The highest level of water stress was found in those trees with hemlock woolly adelgid infestation levels greater than 75%. The lowest level of water stress was found in those trees with less than 25% hemlock woolly adelgid infestation levels. Knowledge of these effects can contribute to development of more effective chemical management strategies. View Full-Text
Keywords: Adelges tsugae; Tsuga canadensis; water stress; infestation levels; southern appalachians Adelges tsugae; Tsuga canadensis; water stress; infestation levels; southern appalachians
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Coots, C.; Lambdin, P.; Franklin, J.; Grant, J.; Rhea, R. Influence of Hemlock Woolly Adelgid Infestation Levels on Water Stress in Eastern Hemlocks within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, U.S.A.. Forests 2015, 6, 271-279.

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