Forest Science and Health

Floods Resulted in $100 Million Loss to South Carolina's Forest Products Industry

The South Carolina Forestry Commission has raised its estimate of economic impact loss to the state’s forest products industry from last year’s historic flooding to $100 million.

The agency derived its initial impact assessment of $65 million in October 2015 from forest planting and inventory data, aerial surveillance, mill reports and consultations with foresters, loggers and landowners.

Invasive Pest and Disease Confirmed in Arkansas

Redbay ambrosia beetle (RAB), a small dark brown-to-black, cylinder-shaped invasive beetle, and Laurel wilt disease (LWD), a fungus that blocks movement of water and nutrients within a tree, have been discovered in Arkansas sassafras trees.

Spruce beetles moving into more Colorado forests

The devastation caused by spruce beetles across Colorado forests accelerated for a fourth consecutive year, according to a new survey, while the once widespread infestation of mountain pine beetles has largely subsided.

The spruce beetle was found to have newly infected 182,000 acres of previously unaffected forests, bringing the number of acres currently impacted to 409,000 across the state, according to the annual aerial survey conducted by the U.S. Forest Service and the Colorado State Forest Service.

Researchers, foodies give American chestnut a second chance

Long rows of tightly planted American chestnut trees line a field here near the Minnesota-Iowa border. But these aren't your great-grandfather's chestnuts.

Those 80-foot giants with massive trunks — the kind that led Longfellow to write, "Under a spreading chestnut tree, the village smithy stands" — were largely wiped out by an invasive fungus in the early 1900s, nearly eradicating the trees once known as the Redwoods of the East.

Volunteers plant potentially blight-resistant hybrid chestnut trees in Brooklyn

Over the last two years, volunteers with the Prospect Park Alliance have been planting a blight-resistent hybrid chesnut called B3F3s in the park. With any luck, they will cross-breed with a generation of pure American Chestnuts that the Alliance planted back in 2004, and which, for the first time last year, produced fertile Brooklyn-born nuts.

"The seeds from that will be even more blight resistant," volunteer Bart Chezar explained. "And those will be kind of the feed stock for the future American chestnut forests of Brooklyn."

ODNR Helping Restore American Chestnuts

 The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) recently planted American chestnut trees at three sites on department-managed lands. The Gorge Overlook area at Mohican State Park, the Scioto Trail State Forest fire tower and the Waterloo Wildlife Area were selected for a reforestation project that is part of a state and regional effort to re-establish the native American chestnut trees in partnership with The American Chestnut Foundation (TACF).

Whoa! Trees Migrate Like Birds

As with birds, tree ranges are constantly changing as climate changes. It’s just that their time scale is so much broader than ours that can’t witness in real time. We often see trees as static because we can only observe what we see in our lifespan. But successive generations of trees can, in fact, cover a lot of ground.

Record-Breaking Tree in Maine Could Help Save Chestnuts

Scientists are excited about the discovery of an American chestnut tree in the woods of western Maine, a record-breaking tree that's giving them hope for the future.

Growing straight and tall, chestnut trees were once prized for timber. Vendors still roast and sell European chestnuts on the streets of Manhattan, fragrant aroma and all. But the American chestnut that once dominated the Eastern woodlands, from Maine to Georgia, was virtually wiped out by a blight that was accidentally introduced from Asia.

Oklahoma City plans prescribed burn at Martin Nature Park

The City of Oklahoma City is looking to set fire to one of the metro's most popular parks on purpose. The "prescribed burn" at Martin Nature Park, off the Kilpatrick Turnpike and Meridian, is supposed to help rejuvenate the land and reduce the risk of devastating wildfire.

The park is a spot of preserved wildland located in the middle of hospitals, businesses, and homes. Because of its location, the city says it would be devastating a wildfire sparked. The fire would be fueled by overgrown grass in the area.

The Case Of The Slowing Sugar Maples

Sugar maples are behaving strangely in upstate New York, according to scientists. While conditions seem ripe for accelerating growth of the maple-syrup source, new research finds that the growth rate of the majority of maples in the region has been in decline for decades.

"It's very alarming to see," said Daniel Bishop, who led the Ecosphere study as part of his master's degree at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, in Syracuse.