2010-06-04

Researchers ponder what kind of forest will grow in the wake of the mountain pine beetle

The devastating effects of the Mountain Pine Beetle are obvious, as witnessed in the millions of dead, rust-coloured lodgepole pines scarring British Columbia and other forests in Canada.

What isn’t clear, however, is what will happen after the destructive insect moves on. What kind of forest will grow in its wake?

A pair of University of Alberta forestry professors—Uldis Silins and Ellen Macdonald—are circling that question, and are starting to come up with scenarios as they are look to the future, well past the invasion of Mountain Pine Beetle, to a long-term goal of forest recovery, resilience and resistance.