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Keyword: whitebark pine

Whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) growth and defense in response to mountain pine beetle outbreaks

Publications Posted on: October 01, 2020
Whitebark pine (WBP; Pinus albicaulis) is a critical keystone forest species of U.S. Northern Rocky Mountain subalpine ecosystems (Tomback et al. 2001).

A burning paradox: Whitebark is easy to kill but also dependent on fire

Publications Posted on: October 01, 2020
Many research studies and syntheses have suggested that prescribed fire (Rx fire) and wildland fire use fires (WFU) are perhaps the most effective tool for restoring whitebark pine ecosystems (Murray et al. 1995, Keane et al. 2012, Perkins 2015, Keane 2018). Rx and WFU fires can kill competing conifers; reduce surface and canopy fuels; and create attractive sites for nutcracker caching.

Whitebark pine encroachment into lower-elevation sagebrush grasslands in southwest Montana, USA

Publications Posted on: August 10, 2020
Projections for the future health and abundance of whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis Engelm.) populations in western North America are dire. Not only has the species been declining due to the combined effects of fire exclusion policies, mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins 1902) outbreaks, and white pine blister rust (Cronartium ribicola J.C.

What is in your planting bag?

Publications Posted on: February 18, 2020
Genetic resistance to white pine blister rust (WPBR) will play a critical role in the future trajectory of whitebark pine and the other high elevation white pines. However, as we found during the field trips at the WPEF Science Conference in September, the terminology associated with genetic disease resistance can get confusing, e.g. not all seed trees are plus trees and not all plus trees have genetic resistance.

Best friends forever: The whitebark pine and Clark's nutcracker

Publications Posted on: October 05, 2018
It’s late fall in the high mountains of western North America and the whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) forests are alive with activity. Birds and mammals are feasting on the pine’s copious amounts of large seeds. When the cones ripen, the competition for the fatty, nutritious seeds - which contain “more energy than chocolate per unit of weight” according to the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology - is a sight to see.

Putting climate adaptation on the map: Developing spatial management strategies for whitebark pine in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem

Publications Posted on: October 05, 2018
Natural resource managers face the need to develop strategies to adapt to projected future climates. Few existing climate adaptation frameworks prescribe where to place management actions to be most effective under anticipated future climate conditions. We developed an approach to spatially allocate climate adaptation actions and applied the method to whitebark pine (WBP; Pinus albicaulis) in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE).

Growth response of whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis Engelm) regeneration to thinning and prescribed burn treatments

Publications Posted on: October 03, 2018
Whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis Engelm.) forests play a prominent role throughout high-elevation ecosystems in the northern Rocky Mountains, however, they are vanishing from the high mountain landscape due to three factors: exotic white pine blister rust (Cronartium ribicola Fischer) invasions, mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins) outbreaks, and successional replacement by more shade-tolerant tree species historically contro

Landscape-scale assessments of whitebark pine

Science Spotlights Posted on: August 23, 2018
Forest inventory data show that more than half of all standing whitebark pine trees in the U.S. are dead. Regeneration of whitebark pine is widespread, especially in lodgepole pine stands, which suggests that active management of whitebark pine should target mixed-species stands to take advantage of natural regeneration. 

Whitebark pine distribution and regeneration in mixed-species stands

Projects Posted on: June 01, 2018
Whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) is an ecologically important species in high-altitude areas of the West due to the habitat and food source it provides for Clark’s nutcrackers, red squirrels, grizzly bears, and other animals. Whitebark pine stands have recently experienced high mortality due to wildfire, white pine blister rust, and a mountain pine beetle outbreak, leading to questions about the species’ long-term viability. This project seeks to quantify the current distribution and regeneration status of whitebark pine throughout its US range.

Predicting the future to save whitebark pine

Pages Posted on: May 08, 2018
Rocky Mountain Research Station Research Ecologist Robert Keane and collaborators present guidelines for restoring whitebark pine under future climates based on an existing international rangewide restoration strategy and an extensive modeling experiment. This GTR will help forest managers develop the appropriate site-specific treatment plans for whitebark pine restoration projects.