Englemann Spruce Beetle

j-1 Before the outbreak of Engelmann spruce beetles, the Trappers Lake area of White River National Forest, Colorado, looked like this. Tourists flocked here from all over the country to enjoy one of the West's most scenic attractions.
After the beetle outbreak, the same area looked like this. June 15, 1939 was the date of the big blowdown. Winds reaching a velocity of 70 miles an hour swept across the forests of Colorado and in their wake lay thousands of toppled Engelmann spruce trees. These conditions were ideal for the Engelmann spruce beetle, a native of Colorado forests, to reproduce in tremendous numbers. First they attacked the bark of the toppled trees; later, they spread to the standing trees, destroying more than 4 billion board feet of timber before the outbreak was brought under control. j-2
j-3 Before the outbreak of Engelmann spruce beetles, another section of Trappers Lake looked like this.
After the beetle outbreak, the same area looked like this. Few of the spruce trees are alive. Originally, most of the damage was done in the Grand Mesa and White River National Forests. But later the beetles spread to the Gunnison, Routt, Uncompahgre, and Arapaho. Plans for controlling the outbreak consisted of working on the borders of the badly infested area so that the beetles could not spread to adjoining uninfested forestlands. Currently this same pest is threatening forests in Montana and Idaho. j-4


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