Thursday, June 23, 2005

The Great Palmer Divide Pine Beetle Massacre of 2005

This is not to be confused with "The Great Palmer Divide Blizzard of 2005" by the way...written about by Rocky on April 11, 2005; however, it is just as monumental. We moved into our new to us house last week and learned a lot about bugs and trees. I love trees and hate bugs. Well, it seems these particular bugs are unusually nasty - Mountain Pine Beetles. They can destroy bunches of 80+ year old Pine trees (they seem to enjoy nesting in Ponderosa Pines) in one season. Our immediate neighborhood has lost over 100 trees in the last year alone.
They chew their way into the middle of the tree and prevent it from providing nutrients to the branches...hand the tree a fungus and next thing you know the Forest Service is on your doorstep telling you the tree must be taken down...even though it "looks" alive.

WE ARE FIGHTING BACK! Tomorrow the blitz will begin. We are spraying, cutting, chipping and otherwise making it a very unwelcome place for these little chompers and hope they find a bunch of treated bark and go to buggy heaven. The replanting of this forest area will begin Saturday.