Skip to Main Content
Forest development and carbon dynamics after mountain pine beetle outbreaksAuthor(s): E. Matthew. Hansen
Source: Forest Science. 60(3): 476-488.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Rocky Mountain Research Station
View PDF (370.49 KB)
Related Research Highlights Synthesis Paper on the Mountain Pine Beetle Biology and Management Now Available
DescriptionMountain pine beetles periodically infest pine forests in western North America, killing many or most overstory pine stems. The surviving secondary stand structure, along with recruited seedlings, will form the future canopy. Thus, even-aged pine stands become multiaged and multistoried. The species composition of affected stands will depend on the presence of nonpines and outbreak severity, among other factors, and can range from continued dominance by pines to hastened conversion to more shade-tolerant species. The loss of mature host trees results in reductions of ecosystem carbon productivity. The surviving and recruited stems, however, grow more quickly in response to the reduced competition, and carbon productivity and live basal area recover to preoutbreak levels within a few years or decades. Infestations may result in system carbon storage reductions, relative to storage among undisturbed developmental trajectories, mostly because of the temporary decrease in carbon productivity. Carbon losses in infested stands are slow as a result of recalcitrance of snags and coarse woody debris. Recalcitrant dead pools combined with recovering live pools results in fairly stable total ecosystem carbon storage among infested stands. Infested stands may switch from net carbon sinks to net carbon sources but typically recover within 5-20 years.
- You may send email to firstname.lastname@example.org to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationHansen, E. Matthew. 2014. Forest development and carbon dynamics after mountain pine beetle outbreaks. Forest Science. 60(3): 476-488.
Keywordsforest recovery, carbon productivity, carbon storage, bark beetle impacts, disturbance ecology
- Carbon dynamics in central US Rockies lodgepole pine type after mountain pine beetle outbreaks
- Stand restoration burning in oak-pine forests in the southern Applachians: effects on aboveground biomass and carbon and nitrogen cycling
- Invasive insects impact forest carbon dynamics
XML: View XML