Successful infection of white pine species by white pine blister rust (WPBR) is contingent upon environmental conditions that are favorable to the spread and development of Cronartium ribicola. Site and stand factors related to this process have been studied elsewhere within the distribution of the disease, but few studies have concentrated on the high-elevation white pine forests of southern Idaho and western Wyoming. We found that mean summer precipitation, average tree diameter, and elevation were the most important variables in 3 logistic regression models of WPBR presence and intensity. The models were tested on a randomly chosen portion of our data set. The model with 9 variables correctly predicted categories of low-, moderate-, and high-disease incidence in 79% of cases. The 2 models with fewer variables had lower predictive efficiencies but were more parsimonious and generally easy to measure. The ability to use easily measured or remotely sensed site and stand characteristics to predict WPBR spread or intensification could be an important asset to land managers who need to decide where to focus disease mitigation efforts and predict disease effects on water quality, wildlife habitat, recreation potential, and other land-management activities.
Smith, Jonathan P. and Hoffman, James T.
"Site and stand characteristics related to white pine blister rust in high-elevation forests of southern Idaho and western Wyoming,"
Western North American Naturalist: Vol. 61
, Article 4.
Available at: http://scholarsarchive.byu.edu/wnan/vol61/iss4/4