Mountain Pine BeetleMountain pine beetle takingflight. They are not good flyersand will normally only fly ashort distance. However, theycan be carried for hundreds ofmiles on wind currents.! Photo compliments of Josh Birnbaum/National Association of State Foresters
History of MPB in the Black Hills Deadwood was established in 1876 during the Black Hills gold rush. In 1875, a miner named John B. Pearson found gold in a narrow canyon in the Northern Black Hills. This canyon became known as "Deadwood Gulch," because of the many dead trees that lined the canyon walls at the time.Mountain pine beetles are native to the Black Hills. Since recordedhistory, there have been periodic outbreaks (epidemics) on abouta twenty year cycle and each outbreak lasted from 10 – 14 years.
The current epidemic is the largest in recorded history and has impacted – to date – over 400,000 acres (one quarter) of forest land in the Black Hills.This picture of the Black ElkWilderness is only one of many inthe central area of the Hills thatlook like this! Photo compliments of Josh Birnbaum/National Association of State Foresters
Latest MPBDigital Mapping (Summer of 2011) This map was generated from digital photos taken by the Black Hills National Forest. These photos were analyzed by State GIS professionals to map the mountain pine beetle infestations.Red areas are MPB infestations.Light Blue areas are private landswithin the Black Hills.
Most beetles fly less than 300 feet to find a new host as long as suitable hostmaterial is available so attacks often appear as slowly enlarging pockets thatcoalesce Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4
Direct controls are measures that directly killthe beetles rather than change theenvironmentDirect controls include: Cutting and chunking Chipping Spraying
Cutting and chunking works by dryingout the wood and killing a significantmajority of the beetles before theybecome adults and emerge.Chipping the wood is also effective. Inaddition to drying the wood faster, italso kills the beetles by mechanicaldamage.