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Cold may have killed 90% of the mountain pine beetles in Alberta


March 25, 2009
By Pulp & Paper Canada

While computer simulations done by the Canadian Forest Service last week indicate frigid temperatures this winter h…

While computer simulations done by the Canadian Forest Service last week indicate frigid temperatures this winter have killed off over 90% of the mountain pine beetle population in Alberta, it won’t be known until later this spring whether that is enough to stop the bugs from destroying more trees in the province.

 

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The computer models show about 95% of the beetles have died in southern Alberta, and 90% have died in the northern part of the province.

 

However, a 97.5% death rate is needed to keep the mountain pine beetle – which produces a natural anti-freeze to protect itself during the winter – from infecting more trees.

 

According to a number of reports, the experts expect to know more about the state of the infestation once crews head out to inspect forests in May.


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