Mountain pine beetles are a major destructive force of western forests. This study indicates the destruction of these beetles is equal to if not greater than wildfires. The story of mountain pine beetles could be made into a film noir. It has sex, murder, fights, incest, parasitism, infidelity, necrophilous (eating the dead), cannibalism, and predation. The metropolis of organisms living with the bark beetles includes mites, nematodes, fungi, yeasts, bacteria, and other organisms that help the beetles kill trees. Chemicals, electrocution, heating, burning, tree-cutting, and numerous other methods have failed to control the beetles. Mountain pine beetles organize their attacks through smell, touch, sound, sight, and taste. People study them, try to control them, are amazed by their vast destruction and as such, this has been a story in the making for over 115 years in the Black Hills. Forest Service scientists have put together this story in a new publication. In the Black Hills, the scientists established 39 plots with a variety of tree densities for various studies. In 1985, mountain pine beetles began attacking some of the plots and major tree mortality commenced in several of them in 1987. Trees on most of the plots experienced extreme mountain pine beetle pressure and of these, the only ones to have surviving trees had densities less 80 square feet of basal area per acre. Mountain pine beetles, their associated organisms, the forest conditions, climate, geographical setting, and all of their interactions contribute to a very complex and destructive forest disturbance that is poorly understood. More than 115 years of direct control of mountain pine beetles has failed to alter their destruction. Stands and landscapes within the Black Hills with tree densities ranging from 40 to 80 square feet of basal area per acre showed considerable resistance to mountain pine beetles.