European oak decline phenomenon in relationto climatic changes
Nowakowska, Justyna A.
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The complex phenomenon of decline in European oak is currently triggered by changing climatic conditions and their consequences like heavy rains, local floods and pest development. Especially, pathogens from Phytophthora genus profit from soil saturation with water. They are alien invasive species, which attack and severely damage fine roots. In drought conditions occurring in the subsequent year, many oaks die as they encounter problem with water uptake. Additionally, insect defoliators followed by oak mildew infections accelerate the level of tree mortality. Secondary insects, butt and root pathogens are usually the final cause of death of many oaks. More research is needed in the direction to determine (i) measurable factors (e.g. chlorophyll florescence) that can indicate that the process of tree decline has already started, (ii) the correlation between the root decay and the crown symptoms (scanners, software), (iii) which combination of stressors stimulate the best development of pathogens that lead to the high plant mortality and (iv) the difference between the mortality caused by the native and the invasive Phytophthora species.
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