Mountain Pine Beetles

One little beetle sure is getting a whole lot of attention these days! The mountain pine beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae), is a bark beetle native to the western United States that uses lodgepole pine trees, among other species, to reproduce. The natural life cycle of this beetle also involves killing its host tree, causing quite a visible change to our forest landscapes! Recently pine beetle outbreaks have been larger and more intense than past events. Why is this, and what does this mean for the future of western North American pine forests? Explore the videos and links below for more information and lessons featuring researchers studying these disturbance-inducing creatures!