Climate change and forest health
In general there is a close correlation between soil temperatures and the distributions of some plant-parasitic species of nematode. Recently, Meloidogyne incognita, previously deemed limited to the Mediterranean area, was found in the Netherlands. It is also believed that a 1 °C rise in temperature would allow Longidorus caespiticola to become established further north in Great Britain.
It is expected that there may also be climatic influences on the establishment of the pine wilt nematode, Bursaphelenchus xylophilus, and its vector (Monochamus beetles), a host complex of serious international concern. Changes in both temperature and precipitation are likely to impact the spread of the nematode and the severity of damage caused by the disease. Pine wilt disease is most prevalent in warm climates as the nematode completes its life cycle in 12, 6 and 3 days at 15, 20 and 30 °C, respectively. High temperatures and low precipitation in summer cause accelerated damage through their impacts on vector activity, propagation of the nematode and water stress on trees.