Top Ten of 2022  


We hope you enjoy this collection of the most popular CompassLive stories of 2022. Each article highlights the people, partnerships, and natural wonders of the South. For the past century, USDA Forest Service research has contributed to healthier, more sustainable southern forests.  


New book on fire ecology and management across the U.S. 

A comprehensive book on fire ecology and management in U.S. forests is now available. The book covers fire ecology of every major forest type in the U.S., fire regimes as influenced by fire suppression, land use history, ecosystem integrity and restoration, wildfire threats, and climate change. 

Planting oaks: A recipe for success

Growing oak trees to maturity begins with two ingredients: viable acorns and competitive seedlings. New guidelines can help managers regenerate healthy, productive oak forests. 

Trapping hogs one sounder at a time

New insights on wild pig populations are leading to better ways of managing them: whole sounder trapping, baiting strategies, and timing trapping efforts so that pigs are absent during critical portions of other species’ lifecycles. 

New synthesis of wildland fire smoke science

A comprehensive, open access book on smoke from wildland fires across the U.S. is now available. The book synthesizes the physical, chemical, biological, social, and policy issues critical to mitigating the impacts of smoke from wildland fires. 

The journey of a special spruce: From the mountains to the U.S. Capitol

two people wearing helmets

Every year a national forest provides a Christmas tree that will be displayed on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. This year, Pisgah National Forest in North Carolina provided a red spruce (Picea rubens). One of the ways SRS supported this effort was by climbing candidate trees to check for endangered species.

Earthworms can jump

Asian jumping worms (Amynthas agrestis) are nonnative, invasive, ecosystem engineers. Researchers are learning more about them with molecular techniques, sampling methods, and other tools.

A supply, demand primer

During the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, prices of processed wood products, such as softwood lumber and plywood, nearly quadrupled. SRS research examined market factors behind increased prices in these important consumer products. 

Chinese tallow leaf litter negatively affects frogs

Chinese tallow tree (Triadica sebifera) is a nonnative, invasive tree whose decaying leaf litter alters water quality and the microbial community in the wetland habitats. This negatively impacts the lifecycle of semi-aquatic species like frogs. 

Focus on Joseph O’Brien: Creative fire & land management

This is a new type of article focusing on the people behind the science. These articles will profile SRS employees – from different job series and locations – whose work fulfills and supports the Station’s mission. 

Bats on the Brink

A new video shows how scientists monitor bats and white-nose syndrome.


Here are a few more articles from 2022 that you may have missed: 

SRS scientists and partners work across many fields — from climate impacts and hydrology to economics, forest health, silviculture, and more. The range of articles is evidence of this deep and wide expertise.

Over the past year, SRS researchers have published more than 400 peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, and reports. All these publications are freely available

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Find the latest publications by SRS scientists.