Forest Health Protection
1720 Peachtree Road, NW
Room 816 N
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (404) 347-7478
Fax: (404) 347-1880
Southern Pine Beetle Prevention
This program is a
cornerstone piece to Region 8's effort to institute a comprehensive and
integrated approach to managing southern
pine beetle (SPB) on Federal, State, and private lands. This program
is a welcome paradigm shift in the management of SPB, putting increased
emphasis on a proactive IPM approach instead of relying solely on SPB
- SPB is the most
economically important forest pest in the southern United States.
- In recent years
SPB outbreaks resulted in unprecedented forest losses, estimated to
have exceeded $1.5 billion in damage.
- Over 70% of the
pine forests in the South are still considered to be in medium or high
SPB hazard categories.
- Proactive prevention
treatments, such as thinning, are known to effectively reduce a SPB
hazard and are best implemented in periods between SPB outbreaks.
- Restoration treatments,
such as planting longleaf on appropriate sites, are needed on thousands
of acres in the South after the last SPB outbreak.
- Treatments associated
with the SPB Prevention and Restoration Program have multiple benefits,
including improving fire condition class, enhancing wildlife habitat,
and increasing recreational opportunities.
- FHP has distributed
nearly $30 million to states and National Forests to accomplish prevention
and restoration activities since 2003.
- In 2004, over
70,000 acres were treated on private (50,000) and NFS (23,000) land.
- In 2005, nearly
80,000 acres are targeted for treatment on private (60,000) and
NFS (18,000) land.
- FHP has established
and strengthened relationships with several partners.
- FHP has helped
develop prevention and restoration programs in all 13 Southern states
- FHP worked
with the states to develop guidelines for states to use as a
guide during program development.
- FHP helped
develop cost share programs in 9 states which has helped federal
funds reach over 1000 landowners.
- FHP has
been involved with state managed efforts to educate landowners
through workshops, publications, and billboards.
- FHP is working
with 12 national forests to reduce SPB hazard on the forests and
restore lands recently impacted by SPB.
- FHP is
working with the Regional Forest Management staff unit and NFS
personnel to identify regional vegetation management needs related
to forest health and fire management.
- FHP has
helped coordinate accomplishment reporting associated with the
National Fire Plan and Operations Reporting System (NFPORS).
- FHP is
encouraging the use of HFI-related activities such as stewardship
contracting on NFS land.
- FHP maintains
a close working relationship with the Southern Research Station
SPB work unit and served on a committee to review and prioritize
research projects associated with prevention and restoration related
- FHP has also
worked with the Cooperative Forestry staff unit, National and Southern
Groups of State Foresters, and Forest Landowners Association to
enhance the effectiveness of this program.
- FHP is working
with a private company, Forest One, in conjunction with several
states and FS research to potentially produce more efficient and
effective ways to identify hazard areas using satellite imagery.
- FHP hired an entomologist
whose sole responsibility is to administer the program. This entomologist:
- has regional
responsibilities to administer the program and is stationed in Asheville,
- works directly
with the state forestry agencies on their programs.
- works closely
with field office entomologists to identify needs, prioritize treatments,
and monitor accomplishments on NFS lands.
- Tools associated
with this program are straight-forward and are proven to be quite effective.
However, further research will enhance their effectiveness.
- This program has
identified opportunities for FHP to work more closely with its cooperators
in the state forestry agencies and on national forests.
- Efforts must be
made to find ways to accelerate the thinning of older, dense pine stands
that can contribute heavily to SPB population growth and spread.
- FHP must continue
to cultivate established partnerships and build new relationships.
This program has
been fully embraced by our NFS and State cooperators. However, in order
to maximize benefits and have area-wide impacts, the program must be maintained
Pine Beetle Internet Control Center (Virginia Tech)
- Southern Pine Beetle Hazard Maps - SPB hazard maps developed by the Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team (FHTET) to identify areas with potential for experiencing significant SPB activity. The regional SPB hazard map, which is a compilation of eight models run across 15 broad ecological zones, includes the Southern Region (Region 8), five mid-Atlantic states, and the District of Columbia. (Links to FHTET)
Dr. John Nowak
200 Weaver Blvd
Asheville, NC 28804