Outdoors blog

Good news, bad news about forest beetle infestations

In the lower third of the St. Joe River roadless area, hikers get a good look at the ravages of bark beetles infesting the aging lodgepole pine stands that emerged from the 1910 fires.  The lodgepoles are near the end of their natural life cycle, and the beetles are feasting on the occasion. (Rich Landers)
In the lower third of the St. Joe River roadless area, hikers get a good look at the ravages of bark beetles infesting the aging lodgepole pine stands that emerged from the 1910 fires. The lodgepoles are near the end of their natural life cycle, and the beetles are feasting on the occasion. (Rich Landers)

PUBLIC LANDS -- A pine beetle outbreak that has left many Western states with vast stands of dead and dying trees has eased for the second consecutive year, the U.S. Forest Service says.

That's the good news.

The bad news is that more trees are dying at higher elevations as beetles take advantage of warm winters to gain a new foothold.

And with trees on roughly 42 million acres killed by various beetles since 2000, it could take decades for some forests to fully recover.

Read the story here.




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Rich Landers


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