Bioclimatic Mapping of Forest Insects and Diseases

This website is intended to provide broad-scale climate-based risk models (maps) of native and non-native forest insects and diseases in Canada. This is being done through the collation of historical and recent field observations, analysis of these distributions in relation to climate and, as they are developed, integration with other types of spatial data (eg. timber volumes, vegetation cover). Some species have been very highly studied but most have not. Rapid climate change has the potential to significantly affect the distribution and impact of native and non-native forest insect and disease species and their hosts hence developing an understanding of climate influences on species distributions is important.

We make use of two modeling approaches: ANUCLIM and MAXENT to generate bioclimate models, sometimes called 'climate envelops'. These models help identify areas that are climatically suitable for a species. These models are not necessarily indicating that suitable hosts would be present, nor do they provide information about the insect or disease population levels. This same approach is being followed in the Plant Hardiness project for plant species. Users can also download 'csv files' of the climate profiles. These are the estimates of climate at the locations where the insect or disease has been observed. Mapping climate profiles may be trivial for some insects and diseases that occur wherever there is a host or if the species has very broad climatic tolerances. The models should be considered a work in progress - many species have very few observations. If you have additional observation data it may be possible to make use of that data to make better models.

To the extent possible, we generate climatic and host site intersection maps, to provide a general idea of ​​the biomass of the host environment at risk.


Native Insect and Diseases in Canada.

Non-native Insect and Diseases established in Canada.


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We thank Kevin Porter, Vince Nealis, Ian DeMerchant and David Langor and the many CFS staff who have been involved in insect and disease collections over time. In addition many other agencies and individuals have contributed data.

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