Christopher M. Oswalt

Research Forester
4700 Old Kingston Pike
Knoxville, TN 37922
Phone: 865-862-2068

Current Research

My current research includes the monitoring and assessment of forest resources at multiple geographic and taxonomic scales. Specific research topics include the assessment of growth and removals in the Appalachian Ecoregion, understanding the impact of the Southern pine beetle on pine forests of the South, tracking temporal shifts of forest communities in Tennessee and Kentucky and the role of nonnative invasive plants in the alteration of forested systems. In addition, my responsibilities include:
1) Lead Forest Inventory Analyst for Tennessee and Kentucky
2) Southern Lead for Invasive Species


Ph.D. in Natural Resources, Silviculture, 2008
The University of Tennessee
M.S. in Forest Ecology, 2003
The University of Tennessee
B.S. in (Forest Resource Management, Minor: Statistics, 1999
The University of Tennessee

Featured Publications and Products


Research Highlights

Cooperation Leads to Continued Research on Tree Range Shifts in the Eastern U.S. (2014)
SRS-2014-170 In an attempt to understand the potential impact of climate change on tree species ranges in the eastern U.S., teams of researchers from the Forest Service's Forest Inventory and Analysis program, Purdue University, and the University of Alabama have advanced tree range shift research by using broad-scale inventory data. The researchers were interested in documenting current changes in certain tree species populations along range boundaries in the eastern U.S.

FIA One-Click: Automated Annual Factsheets for Every State (2019)
SRS-2019-19 The USDA Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) has developed a series of One-Click Factsheets that summarize state-level estimates of forest land for each state. The factsheets are automated, so FIA will be able to swiftly update nationally consistent information for every state. For more than 70 years, FIA has provided continuously improved and increasingly comprehensive inventories to state foresters, forest industry, forestry consultants, conservation groups, national forests, universities, and the entire U.S. citizenry.

Nonnative Invasive Insects and Diseases Decreasing Carbon Stored in U.S. Forests (2019)
NRS-2019-101 Photosynthesis feeds trees and has a significant benefit for people, too, namely the removal of carbon from the atmosphere and into live tree biomass through a process called “sequestration.” But USDA Forest Service scientists and a colleague found that increased tree mortality from the impacts of nonnative insects and diseases results in the transfer of carbon stored in live trees into dead material, much of which will eventually return to the atmosphere by decomposition. This threatens the estimated 76 percent of carbon sequestration in North America that comes from forests.