Natural News 4/15/2013
Excerpt: “(NaturalNews) They serve a critical role in pollinating crops, killing insects, and fertilizing soil, but their presence throughout the state of Pennsylvania is in a disastrously serious decline. According to a new report by PhillyBurbs.com, 99.99 percent of bats living in Pennsylvania’s second largest bat habitat were recently discovered to be dead, and a cohort of biologists currently studying the issue estimates that a shocking 98 percent of bats living throughout the entire state of Pennsylvania are now dead as well. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.naturalnews.com/039916_bats_white-nose_syndrome_die-off.html
Denver Post 4/4/2013
Excerpt: “The hotter, drier climate will transform Rocky Mountain forests, unleashing wider wildfires and insect attacks, federal scientists warn in a report for Congress and the White House.
The U.S. Forest Service scientists project that, by 2050, the area burned each year by increasingly severe wildfires will at least double, to around 20 million acres nationwide. Some regions, including western Colorado, are expected to face up to a fivefold increase in acres burned if climate change continues on the current trajectory. …”
Read entire article at http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_22943189/feds-project-climate-change-will-double-wildfire-risk
Summit County Voice 3/29/2013
Excerpt: “SUMMIT COUNTY — The U.S. Forest Service is adopting a regional policy aimed at managing caves in the face of White-Nose Syndrome, a bat-killing disease that is sweeping across the country. The fungal infection has wiped out millions of bats in the Northeast, spreading southward, and west as far as Oklahoma, but hasn’t yet reached the Rocky Mountains, but the Forest Service recognizes the threat:
“If (the disease) is introduced to cave or (abondoned mine) habitats anywhere in the five states in Region 2, it will likely spread rapidly via bat-to-bat transmission and could quickly contaminate cave and (abandoned mine) habitats,” the agency concluded in the study. …”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/03/29/biodiversity-forest-service-adopting-a-regional-policy-to-address-bat-killing-fungal-disease/
Roanoke Times 3/23/2013
Excerpt: “SALT POND MOUNTAIN — On Friday a Virginia Tech research team working to stop destruction of Appalachia’s iconic hemlock trees unleashed a new microscopic weapon in the fight against the tree-killing woolly adelgid.
Tech entomology professor Scott Salom and graduate student Katlin Mooneyham seeded infested hemlocks on private property near Mountain Lake in Giles County with about 1,000 laboratory-grown eggs of the Laricobius osakensis, a newly discovered beetle species from Osaka, Japan, that preys almost exclusively on the woolly adelgid. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.roanoke.com/news/nrv/1799360-12/tiny-bug-offers-ray-of-hope-for-hemlocks.html
High Country News 3/18/2013
Excerpt: “People who visit Oregon’s state parks have a surprising desire to stay in yurts, even booking them months in advance. Eighteen state parks offer 96 “standard yurts” described by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department as “really cool” — equipped with futon sofas, bunk beds and electricity — plus another 88 that comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The yurts rent for $35 to $41 per night, and many of them are pet friendly. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.hcn.org/issues/45.5/visitors-to-public-lands-seek-different-experiences-than-in-the-past/article_view?b_start:int=0
Summit County Voice 3/13/2013
Excerpt: “SUMMIT COUNTY — Recent research suggests that most beetle-hit lodgepole pine forests are recovering about as expected. But other Colorado forest types have been also suffered the effects of drought and insect infestation — and the outlook for recovery is not as clear.
Across much of the West Slope and especially in the Four Corners region, the tiny ips beetle struck after piñon-juniper woodlands were left dessicated by the early 2000s drought. Within just a couple of years, by 2004, up to 80 percent of the mature piñons in the hardest hit areas were dead, and U.S. Forest Service researchers say some of those areas show little signs of regrowth. ….”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/03/13/colorados-forgotten-forest/
Summit County Voice 3/13/2013
Excerpt: “SUMMIT COUNTY — The spread of a lethal bat disease to Georgia and South Carolina once again heightens concerns that humans may be implicated in the transmission of the fungal spores that cause white-nose syndrome.
State and federal officials announcing the discovery of the disease in southeastern bat populations warned that there’s growing evidence that humans are a factor in the spread. White-nose syndrome has now spread to 22 states and 5 Canadian provinces over the past seven years. ….”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/03/13/bat-killing-white-nose-syndrome-moves-southeast/
Summit County Voice 2/28/2013
SUMMIT COUNTY — Between mountain pine beetles, sudden aspen decline, spruce beetles and ips beetles that attacked southwest Colorado piñon pines in early 2000s, a significant chunk of the state’s forests have changed significantly in the past decade.
But climate change is also driving more subtle changes in forests around the country, and on the ground, those changes may not be as easy to see as a stand of dead lodgepoles. Using satellite images, to track vegetation patterns, NASA scientists say warmer temperatures and changes in precipitation have resulted in a significant decline in forest canopy cover.
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/02/28/climate-nasa-satellites-see-thinning-forest-cover/
Summit County Voice 2/21/2013
Excerpt: “SUMMIT COUNTY — After years of uncertainty over the future of Colorado’s forest landscapes, a new study by U.S. Forest Service scientists puts the recent pine epidemic into perspective.The insect outbreak will result in more diverse and resilient forests in the long run, adding structural complexity and species diversity, researchers with the USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station concluded in a recent study.
New growth, is surging under the dying lodgepole canopy with the vertical growth rate of lodgepole and fir doubling in beetle-killed areas that were left untreated after the epidemic. Harvested stands also showed strong lodgepole regrowth, with aspen gaining ground in some places. ….”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/02/21/study-colorado-forests-not-doomed/
USDA Forest Service News Release 2/20/2013
Excerpt: “ALBANY, Calif.—A team of more than a dozen scientists from the U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Southwest (PSW) and Pacific Northwest research stations, universities and Region 5 Ecology Program recently released a synthesis of relevant science that will help inform forest managers as they revise plans for the national forests in the Sierra Nevada and southern Cascades of California. The three most southern national forests in the Sierra Nevada—Inyo, Sequoia and Sierra—will be among the first of the 155 national forests to update their management plans. The new planning rule requires the forests to consider the best available science and encourages a more active role for research in plan development. …..”
Read entire news release at http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2013-02/ufs–sst022013.php