[ FHP Southern Region ]

Forest Health Highlights 1997

South Carolina

The South Carolina Forestry Commission provides forest health protection assistance to state and private land managers within the State. This program is funded cooperatively by the State and the USDA Forest Service Forest Health Protection unit.

SC Forest Type Distribution
South Carolina Forest Facts

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)Over 2/3 of the entire state of South Carolina is forested (more than 12.5 million acres).

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)Over 90% of forested acreage in South Carolina is privately owned.

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)The Francis Marion and Sumter National Forests (560,000 acres) provide recreational and wildlife benefits as well as timber products and jobs to thousands of people.

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)The southern pine beetle (SPB) is South Carolina's most destructive forest insect pest. In 1995, the State suffered the worst outbreak on record when over $100 million worth of timber was killed. Beetle populations have declined since that time. In 1997, SPB populations were at outbreak levels in the western part of the state early in the year. Those populations declined in the spring and by mid summer the beetle activity increased dramatically along the coast. Throughout the year there were 1,990 infestations affecting almost 850,000 acres of host type. The outlook for 1998 is for increasing SPB population levels.

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)Fusiform rust is the most destructive disease of southern pines in South Carolina. The fungus has severely infected pine stands on an estimated 1.4 million acres in 1997.

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)Forest tree nurseries are closely monitored and destructive insects and diseases are rapidly controlled.

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)The gypsy moth threatens South Carolina's hardwood forests. Using a statewide network of traps, the Forestry Commission and USDA Forest Service work closely together to monitor for any accidental introductions of the gypsy moth. An introduction of the Asian gypsy moth was successfully eradicated in 1995 north of Myrtle Beach.

blbullet.gif (864 bytes)Dogwood anthracnose is a disease that occurs in the forest environment at higher elevations and in moist areas. This disease is currently found in 6 counties in the western part of the State. Mortality of the native dogwoods ranges from 5% to 50% in these areas.


The South Carolina Forestry Commission
and USDA Forest Service

In spite of the relatively good health of South Carolina's forests, a variety of insects and diseases (both native and introduced), and human-caused impacts such as air pollution, continue to threaten the State's resources. To deal with this constantly changing mix of challenges, the Forestry Commission and the Forest Health Protection unit of the USDA Forest Service cooperate to prevent, detect, suppress and manage this multitude of threats. The partnership between the two agencies has worked for three decades to maintain and improve the health of South Carolina's forests.

Forest Health Protection contributions (dollars) to South Carolina Forestry Commission Cooperative Forest Health program, cooperative suppression projects, and Francis Marion/ Sumter National Forest suppression projects, 1995-98.





Cooperative Forest Health Program





Forest Health Monitoring





Cooperative suppression
southern pine beetle





Francis Marion & Sumter NFs
southern pine beetle






For additional information, contact:

South Carolina Foresty Commission
USDA Forest Service
P.O. Box 21707
Forest Health Protection
Columbia, SC 29221
P.O. Box 2680
(803) 896-8857
Asheville, NC 28802-2680
(828) 257-4320