Alvaro Fuentealba Morales

Postdoctoral fellow
Black spruce susceptibility to Eastern spruce budworm defoliation under a changing climate: phenological and biochemical responses

Concordia University

Advisor: Emma Despland

EDUCATION

  • Ph.D. Forest sciences, 2013 forest entomology. Université Laval
  • M.Sc. Forest sciences, 2012 forest entomology. Université Laval
  • B.Sc. Forestry engineering, 2005. Universidad Catolica de Chile

Project description

The Eastern spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana) is Canada’s most serious defoliator of balsam fir (Abies balsamea) and white spruce (Picea glauca). However, an epidemic is currently underway on Québec’s North Shore in which, for the first time, black spruce (P. mariana) is also being seriously affected, potentially leading to a loss of commercial volume. Black spruce has been considered a poor host for the budworm, given its late phenology and less palatable phytochemistry. We hypothesize that an increase in earth’s temperature might be advancing budbreak phenology of black spruce, better synchronising phenology between black spruce and the budworm and potentially improving budworm performance on black spruce. It is therefore important to understand the physiological bases of spruce budworm-black spruce relationship in order to develop predictive tools to manage black spruce stands under this novel disturbance regime. This project examines the effects of black spruce phenology and foliar chemistry on eastern spruce budworm performance using manipulative field and laboratory experiments. The field experiment aims at testing the effects of varying delays between black spruce budbreak and eastern spruce budworm emergence on budworm performance and correlating them with seasonal changes in leaf chemistry to uncover the roles of black spruce phenology and phytochemistry in its natural resistance to budworm defoliation. Understanding these mechanisms of resistance will be key to developing management techniques for controlling budworm in black spruce.

Project description (PhD)

Spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)) is the most destructive insect pest in the maritime and boreal forests of North America. The use of certain silvicultural practices offers an interesting avenue to control the spruce budworm. Thinning has been frequently recommended for reducing damage caused by outbreaks of spruce budworm. The positive impact of this silvicultural procedure on the vigour of the residual trees should render them more resistant to budworm defoliation. However, various research projects focused upon effects of this silvicultural tool on host tree resistance have yielded equivocal results. The main objective of this project is to determine the real effect of thinning on host tree resistance to spruce budworm attacks. The hypothesis raised in this project is that thinning increase tree resistance to spruce budworm, but that this resistance varies according to the stand basal area left in the field, the site drainage capacity, and the diversity of tree species present in the field.

Articles published in journals with revision committee

  1. Fuentealba, A., Sagne, S., Legendre, G., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2020. Leaf toughness as a mechanism of defense against spruce budworm. Arthropod-Plant Interactions (Accepted).
  2. Fuentealba, A., Dupont, A., Hébert, C., Berthiaume, R., Quezada-Garcia, R. and Bauce, É. 2019. Comparing the efficacy of various aerial spraying scenarios using Bacillus thuringiensis to protect trees from spruce budworm defoliation. Forest Ecology and Management 432:1013–1021. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foreco.2018.10.034
  3. Fuentealba, A., Sagne, S., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2018. Defining the window of opportunity for feeding initiation by second instar spruce budworm larvae. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 48: 285-291. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1139/cjfr-2017-0133
  4. Quezada-Garcia, R., Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2018. Phenotypic variation in food utilization in an outbreak insect herbivore. Insect Science 25:467-474.. DOI: https://10.1111/1744-7917.12419.
  5. Fuentealba, A., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2017. How does synchrony with host plant affect the performance of an outbreaking insect defoliator? Oecologia 184: 847-857. DOI: https://10.1007/s00442-017-3914-4. Article 
  6. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2016. Interspecific variation in resistance of two host tree species to spruce budworm. Acta Oecologica 70:10-20. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.actao.2015.11.001
  7. Alfaro, R. and Fuentealba, A. 2016. Insects affecting regenerating conifers in Canada: Biology and management. Canadian Entomologist 148: S111-S137. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4039/tce.2015.50
  8. Quezada-Garcia, R., Fuentealba, A., Nguyen, N. and Bauce, E. 2015. Do offspring of insects feeding on defoliation resistant trees have better biological performance when exposed to nutritionally imbalanced food? Insects 6: 112-121. PDF 
  9. Fuentealba, A., Bauce, É. and Dupont, A. 2015. Bacillus thuringiensis efficacy in reducing spruce budworm damage as affected by host tree species. Journal of Pest Science 88(3): 593-603. DOI: https://10.1007/s10340-014-0629-8
  10. Bauce, É. and Fuentealba, A. 2013. Interactions between stand thinning, site quality and host tree species on spruce budworm biological performance and host tree resistance over a six year period after thinning. Forest Ecology and Management 304:212–223. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foreco.2013.05.008
  11. Fuentealba, A., Alfaro, R. and Bauce, É. 2013. Theoretical framework for assessment of risks posed to Canadian forests by invasive insect species. Forest Ecology and Management 302: 97-106. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foreco.2013.03.023
  12. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Soil drainage class, host tree species and thinning influence host tree resistance to the spruce budworm. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 42(10): 1771-1783. DOI: https://10.1139/x2012-114
  13. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Carry-over effect of host nutritional quality on performance of spruce budworm progeny. Bulletin of entomological research 102(3):275-284. DOI: https://10.1017/S0007485311000617
  14. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Site factors and management influence short term host resistance to spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)) in a species-specific manner. Pest Management Science 68(2): 245-253. DOI: https://10.1002/ps.2253

Articles in published in proceedings

  1. Dupont, A., Bauce, É., Fuentealba, A., Hébert, C. and Berthiaume, R. 2018. Comparisons of Btk aerial spraying strategies against the eastern spruce budworm, based on protection timing and intensity during a complete outbreak episode. In: Proceedings of SERG International. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Pages 291–301.Proceedings 
  2. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, E. 2015. Black spruce susceptibility to Eastern spruce budworm defoliation under a changing climate: phenological and biochemical responses. In: Proceedings of SERG International Workshop, Sault Saint Marie, Ontario, Canada. Pages 292-303.

Presentations

  1. Fuentealba, A., Sagne, S., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2019. Effet de la synchronisation phénologique sur le comportement alimentaire et la performance biologique des jeunes larves de la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette. 13th Annual Conference of the CFR, May 1st-3rd. Chicoutimi, Québec, Canada (Affiche). PDF 
  2. Fuentealba, A., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2018. Impacts de la synchronisation phénologique et de la chimie foliaire sur la performance de la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette. Annual meeting, November 29th-30th. Entomological society of Quebec. Quebec city, Quebec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  3. Fuentealba, A., Sagne, S., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2018. Effet de la synchronisation phénologique sur le comportement alimentaire et la performance biologique des jeunes larves de la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette. Annual meeting, November 29th-30th. Entomological society of Quebec. Quebec city, Quebec, Canada (Poster).
  4. Fuentealba, A., Dupont, A., Hébert, C., Berthiaume, R., Quezada-Garcia, R. and Bauce, É. 2018. Comparing the efficacy of various aerial spraying scenarios using Bacillus thuringiensis to protect trees from spruce budworm defoliation. Annual meeting, November 11th-14th. Entomological society of Canada. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada (Poster).
  5. Fuentealba, A., Pureswaran, D., Bauce, É. and Despland, E. 2017. How does synchrony with host plant affect the performance of an outbreaking insect defoliator? Annual meeting, October 22nd-25th. Entomological society of Canada. Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada (Oral presentation).
  6. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, É. 2016. Black spruce resistance to spruce budworm: the role of phenological synchrony and foliar traits. International Congress of Entomology, September 25th-30th. Orlando, Florida, USA (Oral presentation).
  7. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, É. 2016. Rôle de la phénologie dans la résistance de l'épinette noire à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l'épinette. Annual meeting, May 9th-13th. ACFAS. Montreal, Québec, Canada (Poster).
  8. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, É. 2015. Black spruce resistance to spruce budworm: the role of phenological synchrony and foliar traits. Annual meeting, November 8th-11th. Entomological society of Canada. Montreal, Quebec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  9. Fuentealba, A., and Bauce, É. 2015. Interspecific variation in resistance of two host tree species to spruce budworm. Annual meeting, November 8th-11th. Entomological society of Canada. Montreal, Quebec, Canada (Poster).
  10. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, É. 2015. Black spruce susceptibility to Eastern spruce budworm defoliation under a changing climate: phenological and biochemical responses. February 3rd-5th, SERG International workshop, Sault Saint Marie, Ontario, Canada (Oral presentation).
  11. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, É. 2014. Rôle de la phénologie dans la résistance de l'épinette noire à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l'épinette. Annual meeting, November 6th-7th. Entomological society of Quebec. Wendake, Québec, Canada (Poster).
  12. Fuentealba, A., Despland, E., Pureswaran, D. and Bauce, É. 2014. Black spruce susceptibility to Eastern spruce budworm defoliation under a changing climate: phenological and biochemical responses. 7th eastern CANUSA forest science conference, October 16th to 18th. Rimouski, Quebec, Canada (Poster).
  13. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2014. Can thinning be used to increase host tree resistance to spruce budworm? A six-year study. Annual meeting, March 18th-20th. Northeastern Forest Pest Council. Quebec city, Quebec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  14. Fuentealba, A., Bauce, É. and Dupont, A. 2014. Efficacy of Bacillus thuringiensis (Btk) against spruce budworm defoliation of balsam fir, white spruce and black spruce trees. Annual meeting, March 18th-20th. Northeastern Forest Pest Council. Quebec city, Quebec, Canada (Poster).
  15. Fuentealba, A., Alfaro, R. and Bauce, É. 2013. Theoretical framework for assessment of risks posed to Canadian forests by invasive insect species. Annual meeting, November 20th-23rd. Entomological society of Canada. Guelph, Ontario, Canada (Poster).
  16. Fuentealba, A., Alfaro, R. and Bauce, É. 2013. Theoretical framework for assessment of risks posed to Canadian forests by invasive insect species. Risk Analysis of Forest Invasive Alien Species. IUFRO 4.04.07: Risk Analysis & IUFRO 8.02.04: Ecology of Alien Invasives. February 27–March 1, 2013. Panjab University Chandigarh, India (Poster).
  17. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Soil drainage class, host tree species and thinning influence host tree resistance to the spruce budworm. Annual meeting, December 4th-6th. Pest Management Forum. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (Poster).
  18. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Soil drainage class, host tree species and thinning influence host tree resistance to the spruce budworm. Annual meeting, November 11th-14th. Entomological society of America. Knoxville, Tennessee, USA (Virtual poster).
  19. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Soil drainage class, host tree species and thinning influence host tree resistance to the spruce budworm. Annual meeting, November 3rd-7th. Entomological society of Canada. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada (Oral presentation).
  20. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Site factors and management influence host resistance to spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)) in a species-specific manner. Annual meeting, April 4th-5th. Northeastern Forest Pest Council. Amherst, Massachussetts, USA (Poster).
  21. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2012. Interactions entre la coupe partielle, les facteurs de site, et le type d’essence sur la résistance des arbres hôtes à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)). Annual symposium, March 7th. Consortium iFor. Québec, Québec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  22. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2011. Site factors and management influence host resistance to spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)) in a species-specific manner. Annual meeting, November 6th-9th. Entomological society of Canada. Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada (Poster).
  23. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2011. Interactions entre la coupe partielle, les facteurs de site, et le type d’essence sur la résistance des arbres hôtes à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)). Annual meeting, October 13th-14th. Entomological society of Quebec. Mont-Orford, Québec, Canada (Poster).
  24. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2011. Interactions entre la coupe partielle, les facteurs de site, et le type d’essence sur la résistance des arbres hôtes à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)). Award ceremony Smirnoff fellowship, may 5th. Société de protection des forêts contre les insectes et maladies (SOPFIM). Québec, Québec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  25. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2011. Résistance des arbres à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.), en fonction de l’intensité des éclaircies, du drainage du site et de l’essence hôte. Annual symposium, March 17th. Consortium iFor. Québec, Québec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  26. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2010. Résistance à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l'épinette, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.), en fonction de l'intensité d'éclaircie, de la qualité de drainage du site et de l'essence hôte. Annual meeting, November 11th-12th. Entomological society of Quebec. Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  27. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce, É. 2010. Résistance des arbres à la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.), en fonction de l’intensité des éclaircies, du drainage du site et de l’essence hôte. Annual symposium, January 27th. Consortium iFor. Québec, Québec, Canada (Oral presentation).
  28. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce É. 2009. Résistance à la tordeuse de bourgeons de l'épinette, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.), en fonction de l’intensité d’éclaircie, du drainage, du site et de l’essence hôte. Annual meeting, November 5th-6th. Entomological society of Quebec. St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Québec, Canada (Poster).
  29. Fuentealba, A. and Bauce É. 2009. Resistance to spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.), according to stand thinning density, site drainage and host tree species. Confor 2009. Geneva Park, Orillia, Ontario, Canada (Poster).

Internships

  • Pacific Forestry Centre, Victoria British Columbia, Canada.

Scholarships

  • CEF Grant Training-Congress 2013.
  • CEF Grant Training-Congress 2012.
  • CEF Grant Training-Congress 2011.
  • Wladimir-A.-Smirnoff Fellowship Société de protection des forêts contre les insectes et maladies (SOPFIM) and Natural resources Canada – Canadian forest service (NRCan - CFS) 2011.
  • Doctoral Admission Scholarships Université Laval 2010.
  • Québec-Ex Scholarship Supplemental Tuition Fees Exemption for foreign students, 2008 à 2010.

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