Bark beetles less aggressive in Slovenia than in past years

Ljubljana, 9 November - Slovenian foresters report that bark beetles have been less aggressive and widespread with their attacks on trees compared to last year. The quantity of timber designated to be removed from forests by the end of October represents only 58% of that from the same period last year.

"In general, we may say the damage done by bark beetle attacks is lower than in the past years. The situation is calming down in the majority of forests in Slovenia, and there is no bark beetle overpopulation," the national Forest Service has told the STA.

By the end of October, foresters selected 703,000 cubic metres of conifer trees to be felled due to bark beetle infestation, which is 58% of the quantity from the same period last year. A total of 733,000 cubic metres of trees were felled, which is 69% of the quantity in the same period in 2019.

The forests that have suffered the most extensive damage from the bark beetle are in the areas of Bled, Końćevje and Slovenj Gradec. In the latter two, the infestation is a consequence of the damage to forests done by strong winds in 2017 and 2018.

Nevertheless, less timber has been ordered to be cut down due to the bark beetle infestation than last year in all three areas, data from the Forest Service show.

From the beginning of 2014 to the end of October 2020, a total of 9.2 cubic metres of trees were felled in Slovenia due to the bark beetle infestation, with the largest quantity recorded in 2016 (2.32 million cubic metres).