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Evolution of a short-term study of lodgepole pine dwarf mistletoe vectors that turned into a long-term study of the remarkable gray jay on the Fraser Experimental Forest,Colorado, 1982-2009Author(s): Thomas H. Nicholls
Source: In: Hayes, D.C.; Stout, S.L.; Crawford, R.H.; Hoover, A.P., eds. USDA Forest Service experimental forests and ranges research for the long term. New York, NY: Springer: 251-270.
Publication Series: Book Chapter
Station: Northern Research Station
PDF: Download Publication (2.0 MB)
DescriptionThis is a summary of a 5-year short-term study that evolved into 28 years of long-term research on the US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service's Fraser Experimental Forest in Colorado. The study was begun in 1982 by Forest Service Research Scientists Thomas H. Nicholls and Frank G. Hawksworth to determine the importance of mammal and bird vectors in the long-distance dissemination of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) dwarf mistletoe (Arceuthobium americanum), an economically devastating forest disease of western forests. The original vector study evolved into a study of a plant growth regulator using ethephon for controlling small pockets of lodgepole pine dwarf mistletoe initiated by vector-disseminated seed. An in-depth study of the ecology of the most common vector of dwarf mistletoe, the gray jay (Persisoreus canadensis), followed. The gray jay study evolved into sub-studies on: radio-tracking gray jays between infected and healthy stands in 1983, the exotic West Nile virus in 2003, the development of a method to predict populations and habitat carrying capacities for gray jays by using modeling and geographic information systems techniques in 2005, the use of the polymerase chain reaction technique to sex gray jays for the first time in 2005, and determining the impact of the native mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) outbreak on gray jay habitat and population in 2009.
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CitationNicholls, Thomas H. 2014. Evolution of a short-term study of lodgepole pine dwarf mistletoe vectors that turned into a long-term study of the remarkable gray jay on the Fraser Experimental Forest,Colorado, 1982-2009. In: Hayes, D.C.; Stout, S.L.; Crawford, R.H.; Hoover, A.P., eds. USDA Forest Service experimental forests and ranges research for the long term. New York, NY: Springer: 251-270.
KeywordsGray jay, Fraser experimental forest, Lodgepole pine, Dwarf mistletoe, Ethephon, Frank G. Hawksworth, Mountain pine beetle, Polymerase chain reaction, West Nile virus
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