Current issue: 56(2)
Under compilation: 56(3)
Genetic variation in 5 natural stands of Quercus robur L. in Finland was analysed electrophoretically for 13 isozyme loci. Stands were on average polymorphic at 49.2% of the loci, with 2.1 alleles per locus. Observed heterozygosities, ranging from 13.6% to 16.9%, were slightly lower than estimates reported for German stands. The majority of the species’ genetic variation was found within each studied stand, and only 5.5% was between stands. Mean genetic differentiation (∂) was the same as that found in the primary range of the species, but the differentiation estimates (D) for single Finnish population were more variable.
Studies of phenotypic as well as mixed population plasticities are urgently needed in a world that supposedly experiences a gradual change of its environment. It is important to understand that man creates his environment and silviculture. This is one of the reasons why for breeding it cannot be expected to find optimal phenotypes in nature. Other reasons are the phylogenetic constraints and migration of pollen and seeds.
Forest genetics up to now is characterized by the study of one trait at a time. There is an urgent need for simultaneous analysis of several traits by the aid of genetic correlations or multivariate analysis. Generally there is a need for inclusion of larger numbers of genetic entries in forest genetic investigations.
For the long-rotation-time species there is a need to determine the curves for degree of dormancy and hardiness during the annual cycle. Information of plasticity in two-dimensional environments like water availability and temperature is needed. Studies on nutrient utilization and acquisition will tell us whether or not we must have different breeding populations for different soil fertilities. An understanding of the phase changes between juvenile and adult opens up possible applications such as faster generation turn-over in the breeding population via early flowering and early testing as well as better plants for frost-prone and weedy sites.
The publication comprises proceedings of a conference held in Helsinki in 1981. Forest tree populations are investigated for population genetic structure, mating systems, mechanisms of genetic adaptation and ecological adaptation. Methods and techniques used in population genetic research of forest trees are presented. Much concern is given to applications by means of forest tree breeding, particularly the seed orchard breeding technique. Generally, the application of population genetics in cultivated forests is discussed.
The PDF includes a preface and the presentations of the conference (25 short papers) in English, and a comprehensive summary of the themes of the conference in Finnish.
The paper discusses the theoretical basis of quantitative analysis of the effect of genotype and environment in forest trees. Perhaps the main problem in the understanding of the laws of intrapopulation variability of the species of woody forest plants is the study of the structure of their populations. It may be characterized by a number of parameters. The intrapopulation variability of quantitative characteristics appears as a result of environmental and genetic factors, but to determine the relative weight of these factors in a concrete case is not easy. The study of the structure of a population by its quantitative characteristics has a wider task: to establish the relevance of the hereditary differences of the individuals of a population. Also, the differences caused by diverse growth conditions and how they are reflected in the level of general phenotypic variability of the quantitative characteristics in a given population has to be identified. The author gives examples of assessment of heritability in forest trees.
The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.
Pair numbers of breeding land birds were estimated from line transects data collected in Finland in 1936–76. The changes observed in the bird populations are in this paper compared with data obtained in the Finnish forest inventories, particularly made in 1951–53 and 1971–76. It is concluded that modern forestry has considerable impact on the breeding bird fauna. In general, more species have increased than decreased due to changes in the forests. Areas affected by forestry are more favourable habitats for many species than natural forests, but, on the other hand, there are certain species which are greatly harmed by the effects of modern forestry.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
The study sought to establish, whether a connection between forest ownership changes and regional differentiation process exists. Data were collected by interviewing fifty persons representing regional planning and forestry. In 1969–72 forest land area owned by the farmers decreased by some 600,000–700,000 hectares. The new owners were non-farmers (400,000–500,000 ha) and the State and forest industry companies (200,000 ha). These figures indicate a possibility for a reduction in the livelihood of rural developing regions in three ways: money incomes with their multiplier effects decrease, possibilities of the rationalization of farming decrease and the population confidence in the future diminishes.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
The Finnish Government appointed a committee in 1955 to analyse the economic status of the population living from agriculture. The present paper contains Part II of the proceedings of this committee. It discusses the earnings of the agricultural population from forestry and occasional work.
Agricultural population was defined as all people living from holdings of at least 2 hectares of agricultural land. Forestry income includes, besides the value of stumpage sold, earnings from logging in connection with delivery contracts. Earnings from occasional work include wages for logging made to the account of someone else, as well as wages for agricultural work, floating, carpentry, road construction and maintenance work etc.
In 1951–1954, the farms in Finland received an average aggregate of 29 milliard Fmk for stumpage, 10 milliard Fmk of which consists of the value assigned to the timber consumed by the farms themselves. The average income from stumpage was 110,000 Fmk per farm. The earnings from logging in connection with delivery contracts amounted to 3.3 milliard Fmk, and the earnings from occasional work to 6.7 milliard Fmk. The income from stumpage together with the earnings from delivery loggings amounted to 123,000 Fmk per farm. Adding the earnings from occasional forest work, an aggregate forestry income of 150,000 Fmk per farm has been obtained, 70–75% of which accounts for stumpage price.
The occasional earnings from sources other than forestry were on average 12–13 milliard Fmk, or 45,000–50,000 Fmk per farm. The agricultural income of the farms was 60.4 milliard Fmk, or 230,000 Fmk per farm. Thus, the aggregate income of the farms was 110 milliard Fmk, or 420,000 Fmk per farm.
The financial surplus from forestry per farm for the farms included in the study in 1951–1954 was on average 21, and the income from forestry 18 times as high as in 1934–39. The income from stumpage at the end of the same period was 18, and the earnings from occasional work 27 times as high as at the beginning of the period.
The agricultural income has the greatest relative importance in Southern Finland and Eastern Bothnia. The income from stumpage, in turn, has the greatest relative significance in supporting agriculture in the inner part of Finland, while the occasional income plays its most vital role in northeast Finland.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
Fuel shortage during and after the Second World War compelled the Government of Finland to improve the fuel supply. In 1948 the Government appointed a Committee to draft a proposal on use of domestic and imported fuels. Special attention was placed on how to develop use of peat as fuel.
In rural districts, firewood billets and waste wood accounted for 45% of fuel consumption. For other users than the rural population, coal and coke consisted 25%, industrial waste wood 11% and billets 18% of the total consumption in 1938. After the war the use of coal and coke increased and the use of billets decreased.
Due to the decreased demand of billets, their price in the towns fell lower than the production and transport costs from the most remote areas where the wood was harvested. The demand for small sized timber is important for silvicultural reasons, and wood harvesting creates jobs for the rural population, therefore, the Committee proposes that the state supports the production of billets. This could be done by improving the effectiveness of firewood loggings, and by building truck roads and railways.
Small-sized birch is used predominantly as fuel. The Committee considers the growing stock of birch to be the largest unutilized wood reserve. Supported by technological research, it may become a new raw material for sulphate cellulose industry. Use of industrial waste wood as fuel and improvement of heating equipment would improve the competitiveness of fuelwood and peat against other fuels. For the possible interruptions in imports, stocks of foreign fuels should be maintained.
The article includes a summary in English.
The article is a proposal of a committee, appointed by the government of Finland, to expand the forest education of landowners, concerning use and management of forests. The proposal also outlines a program for a youth association dedicated to forests. The committee proposes that present organizations are used as a basis for the expanding education. The main forms of education suggested were education in public and agricultural colleges, education in forest colleges, forest clubs, forestry study groups and self-study, courses, excursions, exhibitions, competitions and rising of general awareness. Different age groups would be given education adapted to their needs.
The report includes statistics about rural population of Finland in 1938 and detailed description of how the education would be arranged in different parts of the country.
The article includes an abstract in German.
Dilution plate method was used in studying the density and composition of the microfungal populations of the organic layer of Scots pine forests, and the soil-plate method in studying the part of these populations decomposing cellulose. The media used were rose bengal agar (Martin’s medium for fungi) and cellulose medium.
The microfungal density depended to a considerable extent on the moisture content and temperature of the organic layer. Only the combination of relatively high moisture content and temperature, but neither of these factors alone, influenced considerably the microfungal population density. The correlation of the populations to the changes in this combined factor was stronger than the correlation to the seasonal variations of spring, summer and autumn.
The microfungal population consisted of only a few species. Mucor, Mortierella and Penicillium were the most common genera isolated from the rose bengal agar. The first and the last of these comprised almost 90% of the total population. For the Mucor fungi, increases in the moisture content up to the maximum values found (75%) were favourable; the Penicillium fungi, on the contrary, were intolerant of high moisture content.
Among the cellulose decomposing microfungi grown on cellulose medium, Trichoderma sp. was the most common; also, it formed the most colonies, tolerated the lowest temperatures, and was most efficient. The others were of the genera Pullularia, Verticillium, Scopulariopsis and Penicillium. In addition, there were some unidentified Phycomycetes fungi. Only the two first-mentioned caused observable changes in cellulose.
The plant populations of Finnish open bogs are typically formed of two layers. The layers normally consist of one or rarely two species. The structure of plant populations in open bogs is a consequence of the development where determining factors are different site requirements of the species, and the differences in the biotic vitality and capacity for reproduction.
Phytogenesis should be taken as a basic unit for describing the plant societies or vegetation of treeless bogs. However, acknowledging the sub-populations may be of advantage for describing the ecological, genetic and regional characters of open bogs.
The basic classification of open bogs must be done based on the ground layer. The more detailed classification follows mostly based on field layer, partly also based on the ground layer.
The PDF contains a summary in Finnish.
To be able to exactly describe the similarities and differences of vegetation in certain areas, classifying the vegetation only in communities or formations is not enough. Therefore more classes are needed. The classification according the horizontal layers is based on the heights of plants and their relations to each other. Every population in one community has own area of height which extends to horizontal direction.
In comparison with populations the vegetation horizons create a biologically validated comparison of different vegetation groups and their parts. Defining the populations and vegetation horizons creates a division and systematization of plant communities on an ecological basis.
The volume 34 of Acta Forestalia Fennica is a jubileum publication of professor Aimo Kaarlo Cajander.
The sixth part of the six-article series about protection forest in the Northern Finland is a review of the population and villages situated in the Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) timber line area, and how private use of wood can be coordinated with the protection of pine timber line. Both the preservation of forests and the use of the forest as the source of timber and fuel wood in the timber line area are essential for the local communities, especially because in the area there is are few livelihoods. The article includes a proposal for a decree for new settlements in the northern protection forest area.
The article is divided in six parts. A German summary is in a separate PDF.
The fifth part of the six-article series about protection forest in Northern Finland outlines sustainable forest management practices for the Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) forests in the pine timber line area. The author stresses the need to secure the seed production and regeneration capacity of the forests, and the growth and protection of seedlings. At the same time, the local communities’ need for timber has to be taken into account when considering the means to protect the pine forests. The main principle is not to cut more trees than has been regenerated during the time period between good seed years. The article outlines good forest management practices for the timber line area.
The article is divided in six parts. A German summary is in a separate PDF.
The process of capital accumulation in timber production has been examined in this study. A detailed explanation of new investment in forest industry in terms of productive capacity as the determinant of national forest policy target growing stock and silviculture is presented. The basis of the explanation of forest industry productive capacity was a linear vertically integrated input-output production model. The model was used to derive a macroeconomic equilibrium condition specifying forest sector aggregate demand as an integral part of the national economy. Timber production has been constructed as a state variable system and the Maximum Principle used to derive silvicultural investment criterion. The derivation of the investment criterion was formulated as a dynamic problem in a labour surplus economy with linkage between savings and choice of silvicultural technology defined via income distribution between wages and profit. Maximization of aggregate consumption was specified as the goal of timber production.
By assuming a state of sub-optimal savings rate, it is shown that the real cost of labour is not zero in a labour surplus economy. Because unemployment labour is not a free commodity, it is concluded that capital-intensive silvicultural technology represents an optimal means of maximizing aggregate consumption in labour surplus economy, contrary to the recommendation of social marginal productivity theory.
The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.
Studies on Finnish Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) plus tree clones by monoterpene and isozyme analyses was undertaken to further investigate mating system, population structure and pollination. Six allozyme systems (3 GOT, 1 GDH and 2 LAP) were properly analysed on the basis of segregation. Monoterpenes were analysed from needle material and segregation in high and low 3-carene content was found to depend on two alleles C and c. Thus, six allozyme systems and one monoterpene system were used as markers in this study.
It was shown that the northern clonal group maintains a much genetic variation as the central or southern clonal groups. The conditional probability of self-fertilization in about 20-year old clones estimated by the multilocus model was 14.1%, of which 8% originate from mating between trees that carry the same alleles to one of the maternal parent at some loci and 6% through self-fertilization.
There was no prominent difference in allele frequency of male gametes that pollinated the very early or very late flowering clones. The northern clonal group has higher a lower frequency of alleles GOT B2 and B3 respectively than of the southern clonal groups. The artificial plus tree selection, particularly in northern Finland, appears to favour heterozygous genotypes for the alleles that control 3-carene content n Scots pine.
The PDF includes a summary in Finnish.
Progenies from open pollinated cones collected in natural populations of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) distributed along two altitudinal transects in Mid-Norway were tested in the nursery, in short term tests and in long-term field trials. The populations showed clinal variation related to the mean annual temperatures of the populations, with the earliest bud flush and cessation of shoot elongation and lowest height at age nine years for the high altitude populations. Within population variation was considerable as the narrow sense heritability for these traits was 0.67, 0.31 and 0.09 in one transect and 0.55, 0.18 and 0.14 in the other transect, respectively. Lammas shoots occurred in the short term trials with large variation in frequency between years. There was significant family variation for this trait, but also interactions between populations and year. The variance within populations was considerably larger in the populations from low altitude compared to the high-altitude populations. Significant genetic correlations between height and phenology traits and damage scores indicate that families flushing early and ceasing growth late were taller. Taller families also had higher frequencies of damages. Selection of the top 20% families for height growth in short term tests at age nine years gave a simulated gain of 11% increased height growth at age 18 years in long term trials at altitudes similar to those of origin of the populations. The gain was negative when high altitude populations were selected based on testing in the lowland.
Riparian trees, especially relict trees, are attractive and important for research to understand both past and recent biogeographical and evolutionary processes. Our work is the first study to elucidate the genetic diversity and spatial genetic structure of the canopy-dominating riparian Pterocarya fraxinifolia (Juglandaceae) along two altitudinal gradients in different river systems of the Hyrcanian forest, which is one of the most important refugium of relict trees in Western Eurasia. Altitudinal gradients were chosen along two river systems at 100, 400 and 900 m a.s.l. Leaf samples were collected from 116 trees, and the genetic diversity was evaluated with eight SSR markers. Overall, 39 alleles were identified for all of the populations studied. The observed heterozygosity (Ho) varied from 0.79 to 0.87 (with a mean of 0.83). The results of the AMOVA analysis indicated that the variation within populations was 88%, whereas the variation among populations was 12% for all of the gradients. A structure analysis indicated that 93% of the trees were grouped in the same gradient. The genetic distance based on Fst confirmed the structure result and indicated a high rate of gene flow among the investigated populations. Based on high gene flow (low differentiation of the population along the same river) and the clearly distinct genetic structure of the investigated gradients, it can be concluded that rivers are the main seed dispersal vector among P. fraxinifolia populations. The genetic diversity of P. fraxinifolia did not show any trend from upstream to downstream. The high level of gene flow and uniform genetic diversity along each river suggest the “classical” metapopulation structure of the species.
Polymorphisms at a set of eighteen nuclear (nSSR) and chloroplast (cpSSR) microsatellite loci were investigated in sixteen populations of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) derived from the provenance trial experiment and representative of the species distribution range and climatic zones in Poland. The patterns of genetic variation were compared to the reference samples from the species distribution in Europe and Asia. A similar level of genetic variation and no evidence of population structure was found among the Polish stands. They showed genetic similarity and homogenous patterns of allelic frequency spectra compared to the Northern European populations. Those populations were genetically divergent compared to the marginal populations from Turkey, Spain and Scotland. The population structure patterns reflect the phylogeography of the species and the divergence of populations that most likely do not share recent history. As the analysed provenance trial populations from Poland are diverged in phenotypic traits but are genetically similar, they could be used to test for selection at genomic regions that influence variation in quantitative traits.
Castanea sativa Mill. is one of the most endangered tree species in Iran where it is represented by small fragmented populations in the north of the country. 18 simple sequence repeat (SSR) loci (10 nuclear and 8 chloroplastic) were used to evaluate the genetic diversity and population structure of C. sativa from the Hyrcanian forest. For nuclear SSR, the number of alleles detected per locus ranged from 1 to 5 and observed heterozygosity (HO) was between 0.125 and 1.000. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) indicated a high level of variation within populations (84%) and low levels between populations (16%). Based on structure analysis, the four studied populations were divided into two main clusters that have genetic distance Fst = 0.3. The Shafaroud population was separated in the first cluster, Siyahmazgi, Qalehroudkhan and Veysroud were placed in the second cluster. The UPGMA analysis confirmed the results of Structure analysis, separating the Shafaroud population from the others. The 8 chloroplast SSR loci used to screen the populations showed no polymorphism. In General, low nuclear genetic diversity, no polymorphism in cpDNA and considerable genetic differentiation among populations in short geographical distance represent a serious genetic erosion threat for C. sativa in the Hyrcanian forest, even hinting at an ongoing extinction vortex. Therefore, due to significant decline in genetic diversity, it is essential to introduce constraints protection upon the areas of distribution of all four populations of this species in Iran.
We investigated the impact of natural enemies on the cocoon mortality of the common pine sawfly (Diprion pini L.) during a six-year period in eastern Finland. The enemies were classified into parasitoids (insect families Chalcidoidea, Ichneumonidae, and Tachinidae), and predators (birds, small mammals, and insect families Elateridae and Carabidae). The appearance of D. pini was estimated as the intensity of annual defoliation. The impact of stand characteristics on the performance of parasitoids and predators was also investigated. Influence of the natural enemy complex on cocoon mortality of D. pini was nearly stable, but defoliation intensity slowly declined towards the end of the study period. Annual cocoon mortality by natural enemies varied between 66% and 80%. Our results verified that the most significant mortality factors were ichneumonid parasitoids and small mammals. Random Forest classification indicated that stand characteristics, such as basal area, and coverage of lichen (Lichenes) and lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea L.) affected the performance of parasites and predators. We suggest that a combination of optimal stand characteristics, abiotic environmental factors and mild to moderate control by natural enemies acted as drivers, which drove the pine sawfly population to extended gradation. For future forest health management, detailed information on abiotic and biotic regulating factors, along with long-term monitoring campaigns for conifer sawflies are needed to adapt Fennoscandian forests to altered climatic and silvicultural conditions.
Extant populations growing in regions that were refugia during the last glacial period are expected to show higher genetic diversity than populations that moved from these refugia into new areas in higher latitudes. Such new populations likely faced harsher climatic conditions, being established with reduced population size and experiencing the effects of genetic bottlenecks. In this study we employed data from nuclear SSR markers for detecting molecular signatures of genetic bottlenecks, and germination experiments to evaluate reduction of populations’ fitness in natural populations of Luehea divaricata Mart. et Zucc., growing in the southern range of the species distribution (around 30°S latitude). Signatures of genetic bottlenecks and reduction of populations’ fitness were observed in all populations. Lower levels of observed heterozygosity are correlated with populations’ fitness, decreasing germination capacity and increasing the proportion of anomalous germinated plantlets. Promoting the connection among populations is proposed as a key strategy towards conservation of L. divaricata genetic resources in its southernmost distribution range. The offspring from crosses among populations would significantly increase the observed heterozygosity and fitness of multiple populations.
Populations at species’ range margins are expected to show lower genetic diversity than populations at the core of the range. Yet, long-lived, widespread tree species are expected to be resistant to genetic impoverishment, thus showing comparatively high genetic diversity within populations and low differentiation among populations. Here, we study the distribution of genetic variation in the pedunculate oak (Quercus robur L.) at its range margin in Finland at two hierarchical scales using 15 microsatellite loci. At a regional scale, we compared variation within versus among three oak populations. At a landscape scale, we examined genetic structuring within one of these populations, growing on an island of ca 5 km2. As expected, we found the majority of genetic variation in Q. robur to occur within populations. Nonetheless, differentiation among populations was markedly high (FST = 0.12) compared with values reported for populations of Q. robur closer to the core of its range. At the landscape level, some spatial and temporal sub-structuring was observed, likely explained by the history of land-use on the island. Overall, Q. robur fulfils the expectation of the central-marginal hypothesis of high differentiation among marginal populations, but the notable population differentiation has most likely been influenced also by the long, ongoing fragmentation of populations. Finnish oak populations may still be adjusting to the drastic habitat changes of the past centuries. Preservation of genetic variation within the remaining stands is thus an important factor in the conservation of Q. robur at its range margin.
Vaccinium myrtillus L., Vaccinium uliginosum L. and Vaccinium vitis-idaea L. are perennial, cold-adapted clonal shrubs distributed throughout Europe, northern Asia and North America. Due to their usage in food (berries) and pharmaceutical industry (berries and leaves), their natural populations are exposed to anthropogenic and other impacts that affect their genetic make-up. We analyzed 14 fragmentary distributed and small-sized peripheral populations of these species from the Balkans, which represents the southeastern-European marginal area of their wide European distributions, using RAPD molecular markers. The contemporary genetic patterns in all three species within the Balkans were generally similar, and in comparison to previous reports on populations of these species found in northward Europe, where they have a more continuous distribution, the levels of genetic diversity were more or less halved, genetic differentiation was several times higher, gene flow exceptionally low, and the expected prevalence of clonal individuals was lacking. The population dynamics of all three species within the Balkans was complex and distinct, and was characterized by a past admixture of individuals from discrete populations of the same species and interspecific hybridisation not only between V. myrtillus and V. vitis-idaea but also between V. uliginosum and V. vitis-idaea, the latter not being reported to date. Conservation measures suitable for preservation of presumably genetically distinct portions of the Balkans’ gene pools of studied species have been suggested, while the utility of interspecific hybrids in breeding programs and/ or in food/pharmaceutical industry is yet to be assessed.
Populations of tree species with a wide geographic range, such as silver birch (Betula pendula Roth), show genetic specialization to native environments, while maintaining high phenotypical plasticity. Accordingly, assessment of local specialization is essential for adaptive management. The aim of the study was to detect geographic patterns of local adaptation of growth and stem quality based on two open-pollinated progeny trials in Latvia testing local material. Two provenance regions differing by continentality were distinguished, which also differed in genetic control of growth traits, likely originating from the post-glacial recolonization of vegetation and subsequent natural adaptation. Heritability of the traits was estimated for each of the distinguished regions, indicating differing patterns of genetic adaptation and potential for future selection. Trees from the more continental inland showed superior growth and possessed higher heritability. The coastal provenance region showed slower growth and intermediate heritability of the respective traits. Moderate to high heritability for stem quality traits was estimated irrespectively of region. Overall, better growth and higher heritability suggests that anthropogenic selection within the best inland provenances may constitute better performing and adaptable breeding population compared to the coastal one. Still, overlapping phenotypical variation and heritability of quality traits implies improved stemwood quality for plywood regardless of the provenance region. High adaptive capacity of silver birch genotypes suggests ability to cope with climatic changes, highlighting its potential for climate-smart forestry.