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dc.contributor.authorSpencer, Beren
dc.contributor.authorMazanec, Richard
dc.contributor.authorGibberd, Mark
dc.contributor.authorZerihun, Ayalsew
dc.identifier.citationSpencer, B. and Mazanec, R. and Gibberd, M. and Zerihun, A. 2021. Sapling and coppice biomass heritabilities and potential gains from Eucalyptus polybractea progeny trials. Tree Genetics & Genomes. 17: Article No. 15.

Eucalyptus polybractea has been planted as a short-rotation coppice crop for bioenergy in Western Australia. Historical breeding selections were based on sapling biomass and despite a long history as a coppice crop, the genetic parameters of coppicing are unknown. Here, we assessed sapling biomass at ages 3 and 6 from three progeny trials across southern Australia. After the second sapling assessment, all trees were harvested. Coppice biomass was assessed 3.5 years later. Mortality following harvest was between 1 and 2%. Additive genetic variance for the 6-sapling estimate at one site was not significant. Sapling heritabilities were between 0.06 and 0.36 at 3 years, and 0.18 and 0.20 at 6 years. The heritability for the coppice biomass was between 0.07 and 0.17. Within-site genetic and phenotypic correlations were strong between all biomass assessments. Cross-site correlations were not different from unity. Selections based on net breeding values revealed positive gains in sapling and coppice biomass. Lower or negative gains were estimated if 3-year sapling selections were applied to the coppice assessments (−7.1% to 3.4%) with useful families culled. Positive gains were obtained if 6-year sapling selections were applied to the coppice assessment (6.4% to 9.3%) but these were lower than those obtained by applying coppice selections to the coppice assessment (8.4% to 14.8%). Removal of poor performing families and families that displayed fast sapling growth rates but under-performed as coppice will benefit potential coppice production. These results indicate that selections should be made using coppice data.

dc.publisherSpringer Nature
dc.titleSapling and coppice biomass heritabilities and potential gains from Eucalyptus polybractea progeny trials
dc.typeJournal Article
dcterms.source.titleTree Genetics & Genomes
curtin.departmentSchool of Molecular and Life Sciences (MLS)
curtin.accessStatusOpen access
curtin.facultyFaculty of Science and Engineering
curtin.contributor.orcidZerihun, Ayalsew [0000-0002-6021-9624]
curtin.contributor.orcidSpencer, Beren [0000-0001-5475-0251]
curtin.contributor.scopusauthoridZerihun, Ayalsew [6602180048]

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