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Silva Fennica 1926-1997
Acta Forestalia Fennica

Articles containing the keyword 'vole'

Category: Article

article id 5195, category Article
Matti Rousi. (1983). Susceptibility of pine to mammalian herbivores in northern Finland. Silva Fennica vol. 17 no. 4 article id 5195.
Keywords: Pinus sylvestris; fertilization; Scots pine; Alces alces; moose; forest damage; seedling damages; arctic hare; Lepus timidus; root vole; Microtus oeconomus; bank vole; Microtus agrestis
Abstract | View details | Full text in PDF | Author Info

An inventory of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) graft collection in Kolari (67°15’ N, 23°45’ S) showed that severe damage by arctic hare (Lepus timidus L.), root and bank vole (Microtus oeconomus Pallas and M. agrestis L.) and moose (Alces alces L.) was done to grafts in size and in rather poor condition. Furthermore, the damage by arctic hare was dependent on the dry matter content of the needles. Another inventory in a fertilization experiment in a pine pole-stage forest showed that nitrogen fertilization increased the damage by arctic hare. On the basis of the present results, an assumption was made that the formation of repellent substances against herbivorous mammals is connected with wintering process of northern pines.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Rousi, E-mail: mr@mm.unknown (email)

Category: Article

article id 7657, category Article
Matti Rousi. (1990). Breeding forest trees for resistance to mammalian herbivores - a study based on European white birch. Silva Fennica vol. 0 no. 210 article id 7657.
Keywords: Betula pendula; vole; breeding; resistance; clonal forestry; phenotypic plasticity; pests; mammals; Betula platyphylla; interspecific hybrids; climatic adaptibility; hare
Abstract | View details | Full text in PDF | Author Info

Resistance to browsing by mammals differs among birch species, and among origins and families of European white birch (Betula pendula Roth). The variation in resistance is large even among individual seedlings of the same family.

On the surface of the bark of European white birch seedlings there are resin droplets, and the number of droplets is strongly and positively correlated with resistance to browsing by hares. The resistance of European white birch apparently is not expensive metabolically because the rapid growth rate of seedlings was positively correlated with hare resistance, and no correlation was found between seedling size and vole resistance. In cafeteria experiments voles and hares were very discriminating in their feeding on birch seedlings. In field experiments, however, environmental heterogeneity partly masked differences in vole resistance among birch families. Fertilization of seedlings seems not to have a clear effect on resistance to hares. On the other hand, there were indications that greenhouse temperature had an effect on resistance to voles. Practical forestry applications of differences in resistance, e.g. use of species hybrids and clonal forestry, are discussed. The prospects for resistance breeding are good.

The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.

  • Rousi, E-mail: mr@mm.unknown (email)

Category: Research article

article id 1219, category Research article
Thomas P. Sullivan, Druscilla S. Sullivan. (2014). Diversifying clearcuts with green-tree retention and woody debris structures: conservation of mammals across forest ecological zones. Silva Fennica vol. 48 no. 5 article id 1219.
Keywords: clearcutting; green-tree retention; small mammals; coniferous forests; ecological zones; Myodes gapperi; population dynamics; red-backed voles; woody debris structures
Highlights: Species diversity of small mammals increased with structural complexity left on clearcut sites; Productivity of red-backed vole populations was higher in sites with green-tree retention (GTR) and windrows of woody debris; GTR and windrows may provide additive effect for providing habitat to conserve mammals on clearcuts.
Abstract | Full text in HTML | Full text in PDF | Author Info
We tested the hypotheses (H) that on newly clearcut-harvested sites, (H1) abundance and species diversity of the forest-floor small mammal community, and (H2) abundance, reproduction, and recruitment of red-backed voles (Myodes gapperi Vigors), would increase with higher levels of structural retention via green-tree retention (GTR) and woody debris (dispersed and constructed into windrows). Study areas were located in three forest ecological zones in southern British Columbia, Canada. For H1, mean total abundance did generally increase with the gradient of retained habitat structure. Mean species richness and diversity were similar among treatment sites but did show an increasing gradient with structural compexity. For H2, mean abundance, reproduction, and recruitment of M. gapperi were higher in GTR and windrow sites than those without retained structures. There was a positive relationship between mean abundance of M. gapperi and total volume of woody debris across treatments. This study is the first investigation of the responses of forest-floor small mammals to an increasing gradient of retained habitat structure via GTR and woody debris on clearcuts. Our assessment of a combination of these two interventions suggested a potentially strong additive effect that could be cautiously extrapolated across three forest ecological zones. With the advent of low levels of GTR on clearcuts, woody debris structures should help provide some habitat to conserve forest mammals on harvest openings.
  • Sullivan, Department of Forest and Conservation Sciences, Faculty of Forestry, University of BC, 2424 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 1Z4 E-mail: (email)
  • Sullivan, Applied Mammal Research Institute, 11010 Mitchell Avenue, Summerland, BC, Canada V0H 1Z8 E-mail:
article id 893, category Research article
Juha Heiskanen, Timo Saksa, Jaana Luoranen. (2013). Soil preparation method affects outplanting success of Norway spruce container seedlings on till soils susceptible to frost heave. Silva Fennica vol. 47 no. 1 article id 893.
Keywords: Picea abies; pine weevil; vole; mounding; reforestation; glyphosate; plantation establishment; soil water content
Abstract | Full text in HTML | Full text in PDF | Author Info
Soil preparation is a common practice that precedes outplanting of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) in Finland as it enhances the survival and early growth of seedlings. Mounding in particular has become more common with Norway spruce planting in recent years. However, on fine-grained soils, the postplanting performance of seedlings has been poorer than on coarser soils even with mounding. This study examined the effects of different soil preparation treatments (spot and ditch mounding with varying mound height, inverting, unprepared control with or without a herbicide) on the postplanting performance of Norway spruce container seedlings on till soil susceptible to frost heave in two outplanting forest sites in central Finland. The results indicate higher soil temperature and lower soil water content especially in the highest mounds. Mounds, however, subsided gradually during the study years. Seedling mortality was higher and the proportion of vigorous seedlings was lower in the unprepared treatments, mainly due to increased pine weevil (Hylobius abietis L.) damage. Frost heave was present mainly on ditch mounded and inverted spots. Glyphosate herbicide treatment showed no benefit compared to the untreated control in two years. Consequently, seedling damage and conditions in the planting spots were reflected in seedling growth which was enhanced in the mounded spots. However, varying mound height or thickness of mineral capping showed no clear difference in seedling growth. The results therefore suggest that ditch or spot mounding should be used on frost heave susceptible forest soils to promote plantation establishment. Inverting or having no soil preparation with or without herbicide is not recommended.
  • Heiskanen, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600, Suonenjoki, Finland E-mail: (email)
  • Saksa, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600, Suonenjoki, Finland E-mail:
  • Luoranen, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600, Suonenjoki, Finland E-mail:
article id 374, category Research article
Jyrki Hytönen, Paula Jylhä. (2005). Effects of competing vegetation and post-planting weed control on the mortality, growth and vole damages to Betula pendula planted on former agricultural land. Silva Fennica vol. 39 no. 3 article id 374.
Keywords: Betula pendula; vegetation control; herbicides; mulch; cover crop; vole damage; weed cover
Abstract | View details | Full text in PDF | Author Info
Effects of competing vegetation and weed control methods (fibre board mulch, cover crop of clover, various herbicides) on the survival and growth of and vole damage to silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) were analysed based on data from a field experiment established in southern Finland. The cover percentage of competing vegetation and its shading effect were assessed, and seedling size and vitality were recorded several times during the 11-year research period. Mean seedling height and height increment decreased linearly with increasing vegetation cover. Seedling mortality started to significantly increase once the vegetation cover had reached the level of 60–80%. Herbicides significantly retarded increase of weed cover on the initially weedless areas for two to three years, and a cover crop promoted increase in cover percentage. Successful weed control with herbicides significantly increased seedling growth and survival. After 11 years, the average stem volume on the herbicide-treated plots (28.9 m3 ha–1) was 2.5-fold as compared to that of the control plots (11.6 m3 ha–1). Furthermore, seedling mortality on the control plots (21%) was almost 3.5-fold as compared to the seedling mortality on herbicide-treated plots (6%). Having a cover crop proved to be an ineffective weed control method both in terms of seedling growth and survival. The application of mulch had only a slight effect on height increment (0.6 m in 11 years), but on the other hand, it considerably decreased seedling mortality (control: 21%, mulch treatment: 1.5%). These differences were not, however, statistically significant. Small seedling size, high shading class, and high vegetation coverage percentage increased the risk of voles damaging the seedlings.
  • Hytönen, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Kannus Research Station, P.O. Box 44, FI-69101 Kannus, Finland E-mail: (email)
  • Jylhä, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Kannus Research Station, P.O. Box 44, FI-69101 Kannus, Finland E-mail:

Category: Research note

article id 71, category Research note
Jaana Luoranen, Heli Viiri. (2012). Soil preparation reduces pine weevil (Hylobius abietis L.) damage on both peatland and mineral soil sites one year after planting. Silva Fennica vol. 46 no. 1 article id 71.
Keywords: mineral soil; peatland; pine weevil; soil preparation; vole
Abstract | View details | Full text in PDF | Author Info
We studied pine weevil (Hylobius abietis (L.)) feeding damage to Norway spruce and Scots pine seedlings planted in regeneration areas located on peatlands or on mineral soil sites in Southern and Central Finland. The survey included two planting years and a total of 60 regeneration areas (40 areas on peatlands and 20 on mineral soil sites). Some sites classified as peatland were as transformed or transforming drained peatlands that also contained mineral soil on a prepared surface. The soil preparation method, type of surface material around a seedling, pine weevil, vole-induced or other damage and the health of each seedling were observed in systematically selected circular sample plots. There was slightly more pine weevil damage on peatland than on mineral soil sites. More seedlings were damaged on unprepared peat and humus than on a prepared surface. Seedlings surrounded by a prepared surface had a slightly greater risk of being gnawed by pine weevil when planted on prepared peat compared to planting on prepared mineral soil. Vole damage was observed only in one region during one year. Mounded areas had slightly less vole damage than patched areas. In order to reduce damage caused by pine weevils and voles, it is important to scarify the regeneration area properly before insecticide-treated seedlings are planted. Mounding and patching are recommended so that seedlings can be planted in mineral soil whenever possible, even in the case of peatlands.
  • Luoranen, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland E-mail: (email)
  • Viiri, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Joensuu Unit, Joensuu, Finland E-mail:

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