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The effects of windthrow on forest insect communities: a literature review

Abstract : This paper reviews the effects that windstorm-induced drastic changes (micro-climate, soil, vegetation, and ground structural heterogeneity) have on forest insect communities. In the current context of shady and CWD-deprived managed forests, windthrow gaps act as regional biodiversity hotspots by maintaining habitat continuity in a mosaic landscape, and by facilitating the breeding and population growth of clearing specialists and saproxylic species. Windthrow gaps are dead-wood islands where forest protection and habitat conservation goals may stand against each other. Besides the quantitative effect of dead wood on bark beetle outbreaks and saproxylic diversity, the latter is favoured by key dead-wood micro-habitats such as large logs, snags and sun-exposed coarse woody debris. The role of natural enemies and sanitation operations in regulating pest outbreaks is discussed. Heterogeneous openings provide many micro-habitats favouring flower-visiting insects, phytophages on saplings, on fallen tree crowns, and on diverse understory flora, as well as ground insects on specific micro-sites.
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Submitted on : Thursday, May 14, 2020 - 10:01:08 PM
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Christophe Bouget, P. Duelli. The effects of windthrow on forest insect communities: a literature review. Biological Conservation, Elsevier, 2004, 118 (3), pp.281-299. ⟨10.1016/j.biocon.2003.09.009⟩. ⟨hal-02582940⟩



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