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Winter 2024 research updates

Dernière mise à jour : 6 mars

For its first meeting in the new year, the Silva21 community got together for our biannual update meetings to catch up on project updates, latest results and to promote discussion across research themes, hubs and institutions.

This winter our meetings were divided up into four themes and included new data from HQPs, as well as updates from government and industry partners, and field work updates for the upcoming summer!

Below are summary texts provided by the HQP for their projects. Click the research title and name below to read their update.


Selection management in northern hardwood stands affected by beech bark disease - Sébastien Dumont (PhD student, Université Laval)

Northern hardwood forests are affected by global change in many ways, but increasing stress from exotic pests and pathogens is of particular concern to forest managers and silviculturists. Beech bark disease is one specific major concern that affects most of American beech’s range in North America. In infected stands, implementing a fine-scale silviculture to mitigate the impact of the disease and promote more resilient beech populations for natural regeneration relies heavily on our ability to adapt tree marking for partial harvesting. We monitored several individual characteristics, including external signs of the beech bark disease, on 871 beech trees in recently infected northern hardwood stands in Quebec, to assess their ability to predict mortality over an eight-year period. Our results showed that the diameter at breast height, the levels of Neonectria perithecia coverage on the stem, crown dieback and to a lesser extent, the level of canker coverage on the bark had the best capacity to predict individual short-term mortality. Therefore, we propose the integration of specific harvest priorities for beech trees to guide tree marking operations: 1) maximum diameter of 20 cm, 2) moderate (10%-49%) to severe (50% -100%) cover of perithecia, 3) crown dieback ≥ 25%, and 4) a severe presence of canker on the bark. Special attention must also be given to the retention of large BBD-resistant trees in the infected stands. 

Sébastien Dumont

PhD student

Université Laval

Supervisor: Alexis Achim

Project page

Integration of climate drivers into tree-list growth modelling in the Acadian forest region - Jamie Ring (MSc student, UBC)

Silvicultural intensity and structural diversity in boreal mixedwoods - Ethan Ramsfield (MSc student, University of Alberta)

Determining the role of thinning on white spruce vulnerability to drought using a rainfall exclusion experiment - Chloe Larstone Hunt (MSc student, University of New Brunswick)

New techniques to assess re-establishment after severe disturbance and prioritization for remediation measures - Sarah Smith-Tripp (PhD Candidate, UBC)

Seeing the forest through the trees: Collaborative climate-informed forest governance in central interior British Columbia - Dane Pedersen (PhD student, UBC)

Detecting non-stand replacing disturbances in a near-real time context using Landsat and Harmonized Landsat Sentinel-2 time series - Madison Brown (MSc student, UBC)

LiDAR-derived topographic variables to help find suitable sugar maple sites for assisted migration efforts - Joao Paulo Czarnecki de Liz (PhD student, ULaval)

Wood properties as proxies for past climate conditions - Philippe Riel (MSc student, ULaval)

Beyond common gardens: assessing the influence of heterogeneity on the success of assisted migration - Lisa Han (PhD student, University of Toronto)


If you are a member of the Silva21 team and would like to receive a copy of all slides, log in to our Members Area. Forgot the password? Email

Our next update meetings will take place at the Annual General Meeting, May 7 - 9th in Ottawa, Ontario!

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