Laurel Wilt Continues to Spread

The redbay laurels that once graced the coastal forests and residential landscapes of the Southeast have all but disappeared, taken down by laurel wilt, a deadly disease caused by a fungus (Raffaelea lauricola) carried in the jaws of the nonnative redbay ambrosia beetle (Xyleborus glabratus). Both beetle and fungus apparently arrived from Asia through the…  More 

Drought, Insects, and Oak Decline

Recent research by university and U.S. Forest Service scientists suggests that the traditional sequence of events and factors involved in forest decline may be changing in relation to climate conditions. To look more closely at patterns of decline linked to drought and insect attacks, the researchers analyzed the unprecedented oak death event that took place…  More 

Burning the Leafy Blanket: Winter Prescribed Fire and Litter-Roosting Bats

Rather than hibernating in caves, some bat species in the southeastern U.S. get through the coldest parts of winter by roosting under fallen leaves, twigs, and other dead plant material on the forest floor. Although this leaf litter protects bats from the cold, it could also put them at risk of being injured or killed…  More 

Bringing Bottomland Forests Back to the Mississippi Alluvial Valley

The vast Mississippi Alluvial Valley (MAV) that stretches along the Mississippi River from southern Illinois to the Gulf of Mexico once supported 24 million acres of bottomland and wetland forest — rich stands of oak, gum, ash, hickory, baldcypress, and water tupelo. The hydrology of the original floodplain was drastically altered by flood-control levees built…  More 

Tribes and the U.S. Forest Service Strengthen Partnerships

Tribal Nations and the U.S. Forest Service recently met at the 14th annual To Bridge a Gap meeting to share scientific research and traditional ecological knowledge, while discussing strategies for managing cultural and natural resources in the National Forests. The meeting was held from March 30 – April 2, and was hosted by the Eastern…  More 

Mississippi Alluvial Valley Forests: The Next 50 Years

The Southern Forest Futures Project (SFFP) started in 2008 as an effort to study and understand the various forces reshaping the forests across the 13 states of the Southeast. Chartered by the U.S. Forest Service Southern Region and Southern Research Station (SRS) along with the Southern Group of State Foresters, the project examined a variety…  More 

The Status of Ash Species in Selected Southern States

A new Science Update  from the U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station (SRS) provides the latest data on ash tree (Fraxinus spp.) species in Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana. The emerald ash borer, an introduced Asian beetle species first detected in Michigan in 2002, has spread throughout the northeastern U.S. and into the southern states…  More 

Driving OHVs through Streams

Millions of people enjoy nature while riding all-terrain vehicles, utility or recreational off-highway vehicles, or off-highway motorcycles. Collectively, these vehicles are called off-highway vehicles or OHVs, and in the southeastern U.S. – especially in Arkansas – much of this vehicle use occurs on U.S. Forest Service lands or other public lands. In Arkansas, increased off-highway…  More 

Kids Enjoy Learning at the Crossett

Pirates, beavers, and eagles recently descended on the Crossett Experimental Forest. These are the names of the school mascots for the more than 150 students from Lakeside, Drew Central, and Crossett high schools in Arkansas who showed up for a day of hands-on forestry learning brought to them by faculty and staff from the U.S. Forest Service…  More 

2014 Crossett Forestry Field Day, May 16-17

Held at the Crossett Experimental Forest near Crossett, Arkansas, the 2014 field day will provide a full program for foresters, conservationists, land owners, and policy makers on the broad range of ecosystem services provided by loblolly and shortleaf pine forests of natural origin. Included in the general program on May 16 are experts in forest…  More