Farm Ponds Conserve Groundwater in MS

Below the earth’s surface, below the slow-moving creeks and placid bayous, aquifers store immense quantities of water. “In Mississippi, 90 percent of drinking water comes from groundwater,” says U.S. Forest Service research hydrologist Ying Ouyang. “Aquifers also provide water to farmers.” Over the past 50 years, groundwater levels in the Mississippi Delta have declined by…  More 

Highlights from the Joint Leadership Team Meeting

On August 30, the U.S. Forest Service Southern Regional Leadership Team met with the Southern Research Station Leadership Team in Asheville, NC. Ken Arney, deputy regional forester, kicked off the day with a recap of the last joint meeting held in 2015. Several priority topics from that forum are still of great importance: longleaf pine…  More 

City Trees in Houston

The largest city in the largest continental state in America has an urban forest to match. And now, for the first time, information about Houston’s trees is available online. The My City’s Trees web application is a free tool that makes community tree data easily accessible to the public. The Texas A&M Forest Service has…  More 

Houston’s Urban Forests

Urban forests offer a wide range of environmental services, such as stormwater management, air pollution mitigation, reduced air temperatures (Urban Heat Island mitigation), wildlife habitat, aesthetic appeal and visual barriers. Since 1930, the U.S. Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program has provided information on the amount, status, and character of forest land across…  More 

Mountain Roads and Erosion

Forests on mountaintops may seem remote. “However, millions of people rely on these forested headwater watersheds for their drinking water,” says Johnny Grace. “For many people in the Southeastern U.S., high-elevation forests are where clean drinking water originates.” Grace is a general engineer at the U.S. Forest Service, and he recently studied forest roads and…  More 

State Forest Resource Data Visualized

The U.S. Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program, the nation’s forest census, collects and analyzes data on America’s forests. FIA produces yearly reports at the state level on: Status and trends in forest area and location; Species, size, and health of trees; Total tree growth, mortality, and removals by harvest and land-use change;…  More 

New Research Natural Areas Webpage

Within our national forests lies a network of protected ecosystems that are designated for non-manipulative research, educational purposes, or for maintaining biological diversity. These areas are called Research Natural Areas, or RNAs, and a new webpage will make it easier to use them and share data from them. The webpage is a joint effort of…  More 

UrbanCrowns and ForestCrowns

Yesterday’s article covered a method of estimating the stormwater function of urban trees using forest canopy measures. Just how does a manager or other practitioner calculate the extent of a tree crown or a forest stand canopy? U.S. Forest Service scientists from the Southern Research Station Utilization of Southern Forest Resources unit have developed software tools…  More 

Story Maps: A New Approach to Communicating about Forests

The U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station (SRS) Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) unit is increasing the interactivity and reach of forest science by using FIA and other data to create story maps on topics that range from southern forest products to white-nose syndrome. Developed on Esri’s ArcGIS Online platform, story maps are stand-alone web-based…  More 

A New View of the Forest Canopy of the Smokies

Researchers working at the U.S. Forest Service Eastern Forest Environmental Threat Assessment Center office in Asheville, North Carolina, are just a short drive away from one of the most biodiverse places on the planet: the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which straddles 800 square miles of western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee. Although they and…  More