"Study: Colorado Forests Not Doomed"

"Intensive research shows vigorous regrowth in beetle-killed tracts."

"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 ultimately 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 after carefully monitoring regrowth in beetle-killed stands.

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."

Bob Berwyn reports in the Summit County Citizens Voice February 21, 2013.

Source: Summit County Voice, 02/22/2013