Awareness, detection and management of new and emerging tree pests and pathogens in Europe: stakeholders’ perspectives

Samantha Green, Katharina Dehnen-Schmutz, Jassy Drakulic, René Eschen, Christophe Orazio, Jacob C. Douma, Karl Lundén, Fernanda Colombari, Hervé Jactel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
32 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Emerging and invasive tree pests and pathogens in Europe are increasing in number and range, having impacts on biodiversity, forest services, ecosystems and human wellbeing. Stakeholders involved in tree and forest management contribute to the detection and management of new and emerging tree pests and pathogens (PnPs). We surveyed different groups of stakeholders in European countries. The stakeholders were mainly researchers, tree health surveyors, and forest managers, as well as forest owners, nurseries, policy makers, advisors, forestry authorities, NGOs and civil society. We investigated which tools they used to detect and manage PnPs, surveyed their current PnP awareness and knowledge, and collated the new and emerging PnP species of concern to them. The 237 respondents were based in 15 European countries, with the majority from the United Kingdom, France and the Czech Republic. There was a strong participation of respondents with a work focus on research and surveying, whereas timber traders and plant importers were less represented. Respondents were surveyed on 18 new, emerging PnPs in Europe and listed an additional 37 pest species and 21 pathogen species as potential future threats. We found that species on EPPO’s list of ‘priority pests’ were better known than those not listed. Stakeholders working in urban environments were more aware of PnPs compared to those working in rural areas. Stakeholders’ awareness of PnPs was not related to the number of new, emerging PnP species present in a country.
Stakeholders want access to more detection and management tools, including long-term citizen science monitoring, maps showing spread and range of new PnPs, pest identification smartphone apps, handheld detection devices, drone monitoring, eDNA metabarcoding. To help facilitate better forest health across Europe, they called for mixed forest development, reduced nursery stock movement, biosecurity and data sharing between organisations. These results indicate that stakeholder knowledge of a few key PnP may be good, but given that the large diversity of threats is so large, and future risks unknown, we conclude that multiple and varied methods for generic detection, mitigation and management methods, many in development, are needed in the hands of stakeholders surveying and managing trees and woodlands in Europe
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-40
Number of pages32
JournalNeoBiota
Volume84
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2023

Bibliographical note

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Funder

This manuscript is a result of collaborative work by the HOMED (HOlistic Management of Emerging forest pests and Diseases) Project which received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme under grant agreement No 7771271. Publisher Copyright: © Samantha Green et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Keywords

  • forest management
  • invasive alien species
  • new methods and tools
  • participatory research
  • risk management
  • stakeholder survey
  • tree health biosecurity

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