At the Department of Forest Protection and Entomology, we cover several areas of scientific interest: forest protection against insect pests (prof. Turčáni and assoc. prof. Nakládal), fungal pathogenes (RNDr. Čížková, assoc. prof. Šrůtka and assoc. prof. Pešková), insect pathology (prof. Holuša, dr. Lukášová), biodiversity and utilization of insects as bio-indicators (assoc. prof. Horák), taxonomy (dr. Baňař, Ing. Trýzna, Ing. Synek and Háva), simulation and prediction of disturbance phenomena (assoc. prof. Hlásny) and chemical communication of insects, including the study of phylogenetic relations (assoc. prof. Šobotník).
In 1919, the first independent forestry department in Bohemia was opened at the Czech Polytechnics in Prague (Czech Technical University).
In 1920–1939, we had several outstanding forest-protection researchers: professors Szalatnay, Nechleba, Jirsík and Pfeffer (Forest Protection Institute), Šámal (Institute of Agricultural and Forest Entomology), Bubák and Peklo (Institute of Phytopathology). The Faculty of Forestry was established after WW II, in 1951, and in 1959 it was transferred from the Czech Technical University to the College of Agriculture (founded in 1952). In 1964, the Faculty of Forestry (FF) was transformed into the Forestry Research Institute and relocated to Kostelec nad Černými lesy near Prague, its teaching activities subdued. In 1945–1964, two significant professors, Kavina and Příhoda, represented forest protection research. During the interlude in Kostelec, prof. Černý and Kalina stood out as significant figures in the area of forest protection. Forestry subjects started to be taught again in 1990 at the re-established Faculty of Forestry, provisionally seated in a temporary building on the College of Agriculture campus in Prague-Suchdol. The Department of Forest Protection was established in the new building of the Faculty with assoc. prof. Kalina as the head. Numbers of students increased and prof. Kalina’s team put all their effort into teaching and research. In 1995, the College of Agriculture was renamed as the Czech University of Life Sciences Prague and in the 1990s, the department also changed its name to Department of Forest Protection and Game Management to characterize its subject field more precisely. In 2003, our Faculty was renamed as the Faculty of Forestry and Environmental Sciences, and in 2007 the school divided into Faculty of Forest and Wood Sciences (FFWS) and Faculty of Environmental Sciences (FES). On January 1, 2013, the Department of Forest Protection and Game Management split into the Department of Forest Protection and Entomology and the Department of Game Management and Wildlife Biology.
We teach a broad range of biology courses, related to issues of forest protection (forest phytopathology, forest entomology). Each academic year, the Department offers optional courses for students from other CZU faculties (e.g. Forest Protection). Continuously, new subjects are being accredited to help graduates achieve their full potential in modern research and employment practice.
We do both pure, basic research as well as applied research in cooperation with the forestry industry and forest protection organisations (e.g. the Bohemian Switzerland National Park). Recently, we have been involved in research of the following issues:
- simulation of forest-stand disturbance damage induced by wind, snow and mechanical stress;
- simulation of forest fire spreading, forest fire prevention, forest fire danger;
- insect taxonomy and ecology;
- phylogeny of significant herbivores on a global scale;
- biodiversity of forest stands;
- recently significant and spreading fungal pathogenes;
- mycorrhizal relations, their importance in forest ecosystems and ways to support them;
- cockchafer repellents and pesticides;
- climate change influence on forest pests spreading;
- prognostication and simulation of forest pests occurrence;
- outlining the legislative, forest-management, game-management and silvicultural-protective framework to help forest management adapt to natural and social changes.
We use an entomology and phytopathology lab equipped with all necessary instruments, modern growth chambers and insectary chambers for rearing termites and other insect species.
We also have a large refrigerating and freezing facilities allowing us to store samples gathered during the season and study them later. New research rooms (combustion chamber, physiology laboratory to monitor atmospheric pressure impact and CO2 and physiology of organisms in phyto- and barochambers).
Our research is financially supported by various projects of the Grant Agency of the Czech Republic, National Agency for Agricultural Research, Technological Agency of CR and Grant Service of the state enterprise Forests of the Czech Republic. We conclude one-year research contracts with forestry and other subjects involved in topical regional issues.
Long and systematic field and lab efforts has been bringing an extensive amount of research material and data that are continuously being processed, evaluated and the results published in Czech and foreign reviewed and IF periodicals. Annually, we publish ca 50 articles (presented in the Web of Science database, esp. in forestry and biology categories). We also publish certified methodologies, and quite recently, we have succeeded in registering utility models. Our research brings valuable results and we provide consultancy service to help them be applied in practice.
The Department collaborates with numerous forestry subjects (Prague Archbishopric Forest District, Forests of the Ostrava-Opava Bishopric, Municipal Forests of Jihlava Ltd., Kaiser Ltd. etc.) as well as with other forestry education and research organisations (Forestry and Game Management Research Institute in Strnady, Mendel University Brno, University of Ostrava etc.).
Currently, we have been intensifying our efforts to open up to collaboration with foreign universities and institutes. The Department takes part in multilateral projects with experts from the National Forest Centre in Zvolen and from the Austrian Universität für Bodenkultur Wien. In forest protection, we cooperate especially with the Faculty of Forestry of the University of Agriculture in Krakow, University of West Hungary, University of Tokyo and USDA FS Research Station in Morgantown (WV, USA), Institute of Forest- and Wood Protection, Sopron, Institute of Zoology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences in Sofia, Institute of Forest- and Wood Protection, Sopron, Forest Research Institute Krakow, Warszawa, Croatian Forest Research Institute, Jasterbarsko, Croatia, and with the German research institute Landesbetrieb Forst Brandenburg in Eberswalde.