Invasives - Plants, Pests, and Pathogens
Invasive species are a rapidly expanding threat to wildand ecosystems
throughout the Western United States. Invasive species are defined
as those that are nonnative (or alien) to the invaded ecosystem
introduction is likely to result in economic or environmental
harm, or reduce environmental integrity. Human activities are the primary spread agent for invasive species.
We have also included native outbreaks of plants, pathogens, and insects within their natural range that have reached deleterious levels. Native species outbreaks at unprecedented levels of attack are increasingly common and have likely occurred due to increases in summer temperature (increasing season length and the number of potential generations per year), increases in winter minimum temperature (reducing winter mortality), and more severe host drought stress (increasing production and release of volatile organic compound attractants).
WWETAC supports reviews to identify gaps in knowledge, research to fill knowledge gaps, syntheses of research and information, modeling of effects and interactions, vulnerability assessments, assesment tool development and communication of information to land and resource managers.
WWETAC has a number of projects concerning invasive plants, pests, and pathogens. Current projects include:
- Characterizing root- and heart-rot diseases of Pacific island forests
- Continuing investigation of the introduced parasites of larch casebearer (Coleophora laricella) in the Blue Mts. (OR) and throughout the Pacific Northwest
- Impacts of bark beetles on ecosystem values in western forests: A synthesis
- Life history traits and fitness indicators of common native and invasive, non-native plant species in western Washington and Oregon
- Mapping pine-beetle attacks and associated fire hazard over time
- Predicting plant invasions in NE Oregon
- Prevalence of rodenticide in fishers in the Sierra National Forest: ecological implications of illegal marijuana cultivation on public lands in the western United States
- Regional noxious weed distribution mapping program (OR)
- Synthesis of dendrochronology methods used to detect insect outbreaks
- Threat assessment of non-native perennial grasses to the ecology and management of National Grasslands in the Northern Great Plains
Past projects include:
- Applying population ecology to strategies for eradicating invasive forest insects
- Are the introduced parasites of larch casebearer (Coleophora laricella), still present in the Blue Mountains, Oregon?
- Detection, monitoring, and mapping of sudden oak death using hyperspectral imagery
- Developing biological control methods for the goldspotted oak borer (GSOB), Agrilus coxalis (Coleoptera: Buprestidae)
- Developing an interior west-wide model to predict present and future climatic influences on Armillaria root disease in the USA
- Development of GIS-based maps for the "top 10" invasive weeds in Crook County, Oregon
- Estimating insect distributions in Alaskan landscapes not covered in aerial surveys
- Evaluation of models for assessment of threats to wildlands in the Western United States from displacement by cheatgrass and pinyon-juniper woodlands
- Forest insect & pathogen hazard rating system database
- Fuel reduction and weed management
- Genetic characterization of guava rust (Puccinia psidii): Evaluating pathways of spread and assessing future threats
- GMWest: A risk assessment system for gypsy moth introductions in the Pacific Northwest
- Improved early detection for the Mediterranean pine engraver, Orthotomicus erosus, an invasive bark beetle
- Influence of bark beetles and black stain root disease on delayed mortality predictions of prescribed fire-damaged ponderosa pine in the eastern Cascades
- Pathways and risk assessment of emerald ash borer movement into and within the Western United States
- Prescribed fire regime and grazing effects on understory vegetation and exotic invasive plants
- Regional variation in North American fungal associates of Dendroctonus valens: What goes 'round comes 'round?
- Spatial modeling of invasive plant spread on roads and river networks in Alaska
- Tamarisk in the Pacific Northwest: current distribution, species-environment relationships, and threat assessment
- Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment GeoService