The efficacy of fall and burn operations on the erradication of mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae) in Alberta

Bunch and burn operations is a common tool for controlling the spread of mountain pine beetle in Alberta and involves felling and piling of infested pine trees and subsequently, burning the log decks to eradicate the beetles. Current practices mandate the complete burn of the bark, whereas past studies and government standards have shown that heat levels of 56˚C is sufficient to kill most pests and pathogens. This study will test the efficiency of bunch and burn operations, as well as comparing different log deck structures, in eradicating mountain pine beetle larvae. The goal of this project is to find out whether complete burning of the bark is required or whether the heat generated from burning is sufficient in killing mountain pine beetle larvae. Different log deck structures will also be compared to determine the optimal log pile dynamic to promote the highest heat levels and most efficient structure for eradicating mountain pine beetle larvae.

Faculty Supervisor:

Dr. Allan Carroll


Janson Wong


Spectrum Resource Group Inc.






University of British Columbia



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