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Joining forces for genetic conservationAuthor(s): Gary Man; Emily Boes; Rhoda Maurer; Michael Dosmann; Matt Lobdell; Kevin Conrad; Mike Kintgen; Rebecca Sucher; Martin Nicholson; David Stevenson; Brianna McTeague; Evan Heck; Richard A. Sniezko
Source: In: Sniezko, Richard A.; Man, Gary; Hipkins, Valerie; Woeste, Keith; Gwaze, David; Kliejunas, John T.; McTeague, Brianna A., tech. cords. 2017. Gene conservation of tree species—banking on the future. Proceedings of a workshop. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-963. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station: 174-179.
Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)
Station: Pacific Northwest Research Station
PDF: Download Publication (322.0 KB)
DescriptionFacing a Challenge
Non-native diseases and insects as well as a changing climate pose serious threats to native trees in North America. Genetic variation in a species is key to its enduring persistence in the face of these abiotic and biotic threats. Efforts to conserve genetic diversity of North American tree at-risk species will ensure the genetic resources of a species are available to help foster management activities to preserve tree species in native and urban forests, retain their invaluable roles in providing ecosystem services, and commercial and cultural uses.
One species facing such challenges is whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), an ecologically important and much beloved tree warranted for listing under the Endangered Species Act (USFWS 2011). White pine blister rust (WPBR) (caused by the non-native fungal pathogen Cronartium ribicola), mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae), and climate change are severely impacting the health of whitebark pine stands across the range of the species (USFWS 2011). Collaboration between groups such as public gardens and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service (USDA FS) can bolster efforts to conserve whitebark pine and other threatened tree species by offering opportunities for sharing resources, conservation education, and genetic conservation. The USDA FS is a leader in mitigating whitebark pine decline through its support of personnel and active programs that evaluate the frequency and level of genetic resistance to WPBR (Sniezko et al. 2011a) and the development of protocols to initiate restoration activities. Successful restoration of whitebark pine will require collaboration with and the contributions of many other groups as well.
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CitationMan, Gary; Boes, Emily; Maurer, Rhoda; Dosmann, Michael; Lobdell, Matt; Conrad, Kevin; Kintgen, Mike; Sucher, Rebecca; Nicholson, Martin; Stevenson, David; McTeague, Brianna; Heck, Evan; Sniezko, Richard A. 2017. Joining forces for genetic conservation. In: Sniezko, Richard A.; Man, Gary; Hipkins, Valerie; Woeste, Keith; Gwaze, David; Kliejunas, John T.; McTeague, Brianna A., tech. cords. 2017. Gene conservation of tree species—banking on the future. Proceedings of a workshop. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-963. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station: 174-179.
- Partnerships in the Pacific Northwest help save an endangered species, whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis): an example of dynamic genetic conservation
- The U.S. Forest Service's renewed focus on gene conservation of five-needle pine species
- Blister rust resistance among 19 families of whitebark pine, Pinus albicaulis, from Oregon and Washington – early results from an artificial inoculation trial
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