Jim Widlak, CFO Biologist
A severe winter
snow storm in 1997 and a tornado in 1998 damaged trees on more than 3,000
acres on the southern end of the Daniel Boone National Forest in Kentucky.
Subsequent mild winters in 1999 and 2000 set the stage for a severe
outbreak of the southern pine beetle that is currently threatening to
eliminate a federally listed species from the state.
by Jay Snyder
Agriculture Extension Service
The majority of trees damaged
in the storm and tornado were pines, principally Virginia pine and
shortleaf pine, two of the species which are susceptible to infestation by
southern pine beetles. The adult beetles, each about half the size of a grain
of rice, bore into the bark and create tunnels, or "galleries"
for laying their eggs. These galleries are located in the living tissue of
the tree trunk under the bark. When the larvae develop into adults, they
emerge from the tree by boring out through the bark and fly to another
tree. As a beetle bores into the bark of a pine tree, it releases a
chemical that attracts other pine beetles to the tree. The tree eventually
dies as hundreds or thousands of pine beetles bore into and destroy the
living tissue in the tree trunk. continued...
CFO Partners with Powell County
Brad Bingham, CFO Biologist
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in
partnership with the Powell County, KY Board of Education, U.S. Forest
Service, Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, county, city
and private organizations, provided funding, time, and effort to convert
approximately 18 acres into outdoor environmental study areas. These areas
will provide students throughout the Powell County an opportunity to learn
more about their natural surroundings and environment.
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Activities such as the conversion of fescue
to native warm season grasses, wetland creation, reforestation of native
species, establishment of native wildflower gardens and wildlife foodplots,
installation of nest boxes and bat houses were all implemented.
Wetland areas were created to provide
habitat for amphibians, reptiles, waterfowl, and wading birds. Native warm
season grasses were planted to provide nesting habitat for neotropical
birds, and local small game animals such as the northern bobwhite quail
and eastern cottontail rabbit. Butterfly gardens were planted with native
vegetation to provide a food sources for butterflies, hummingbirds, and an
assortment of insects. All activities serve as educational tools to assist
in the development of environmentally aware students who will become our
future citizens and leaders.