More than 100,000 beetle infested trees fall daily nationwide - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

More than 100,000 beetle infested trees fall daily nationwide

Posted: Updated:

The mountain pine beetle is native to Montana. It usually does not cause too much trouble, but an unseasonably warm winter 10 years ago allowed the beetle population to explode, which caused an epidemic never before seen in the area.

"Sixty percent of that land mass was impacted and the tree mortality was pretty huge,
said Kathy Bushnell, Public Affairs Officer for the Helena U.S. Forest Service.

Unlike animals, trees can stand dead an average of eight to 15 years, so we're right in the middle of the time where these beetle infested trees should be falling. Bushnell says most infested campground and hiking areas have been treated and cleared at least once since the epidemic, but now there is another problem- safety. 

"We have seen when we go back, when it
s time to remove the trees, we have seen that trees have fallen down on picnic tables," said Bushnell. 

These trees pose a huge risk to public safety. Sadly, one of these dead trees fell on a mother camping with her family last summer killing her.

However, is possible to avoid similar situations from happening again.  Bushnell says people should stay clear of dead trees, which have an orange tint and most do not have any needles on them. In general, Bushnell says, follow your gut.

"If it is a windy day, if they feel uncomfortable, just leave the site. They can come back when it
s less windy, said Bushnell.

The U.S. Forest Service says more than 100,000 of these trees are falling on a daily basis nationwide, so wherever you wander, be on the lookout.

  • Most Popular

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Montana family's Cancun vacation derailed by serious injury

    Montana family's Cancun vacation derailed by serious injury

    Tuesday, May 22 2018 3:14 PM EDT2018-05-22 19:14:37 GMT
    Tuesday, May 22 2018 3:14 PM EDT2018-05-22 19:14:37 GMT

    A family from Malta on vacation in Cancun has had their dream vacation come to a terrible conclusion after a dive off of a dock resulted in a broken spine.

    A family from Malta on vacation in Cancun has had their dream vacation come to a terrible conclusion after a dive off of a dock resulted in a broken spine.

  • Smith River drowning victim identified

    Smith River drowning victim identified

    Monday, May 21 2018 7:37 PM EDT2018-05-21 23:37:32 GMT
    Tuesday, May 22 2018 5:54 PM EDT2018-05-22 21:54:54 GMT

    At approximately 1 P.M. today, first responders were called to mile marker 20 on Milligan Rd. near the Smith River. The initial investigation shows 3 men, who have not been identified were on the Smith River with 2 boats.   The 2-man boat rounded a corner on the river and struck a large rock which caused the boat to capsize.  One of the men was able to swim to shore and is in good condition. The other man who was in the boat was not...

    At approximately 1 P.M. today, first responders were called to mile marker 20 on Milligan Rd. near the Smith River. The initial investigation shows 3 men, who have not been identified were on the Smith River with 2 boats.   The 2-man boat rounded a corner on the river and struck a large rock which caused the boat to capsize.  One of the men was able to swim to shore and is in good condition. The other man who was in the boat was not...

  • Libby bear attack victim recovering

    Libby bear attack victim recovering

    Monday, May 21 2018 7:46 PM EDT2018-05-21 23:46:51 GMT

     A woman attacked by a grizzly bear in Northwest Montana is being closely monitored tonight. Amber Kornak now has metal plates and drains in her head and is at risk for swelling induced seizures. Kornak dreamed of working with grizzly bears and finally got a position in Libby, Mont. as a grizzly bear wildlife technician with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 

     A woman attacked by a grizzly bear in Northwest Montana is being closely monitored tonight. Amber Kornak now has metal plates and drains in her head and is at risk for swelling induced seizures. Kornak dreamed of working with grizzly bears and finally got a position in Libby, Mont. as a grizzly bear wildlife technician with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 

  • 1 Killed in 2 vehicle crash on I-15

    1 Killed in 2 vehicle crash on I-15

    Sunday, May 20 2018 1:50 PM EDT2018-05-20 17:50:53 GMT
    Monday, May 21 2018 7:41 PM EDT2018-05-21 23:41:41 GMT

    Around 11:30 am on Sunday, scanner traffic indicated a rollover crash had occurred in the southbound lane of Interstate 15 near Emerson Junction.

    Around 11:30 am on Sunday, scanner traffic indicated a rollover crash had occurred in the southbound lane of Interstate 15 near Emerson Junction.

  • GFPS breaks ground on $37 Million dollar Great Falls High remodel

    GFPS breaks ground on $37 Million dollar Great Falls High remodel

    Monday, May 21 2018 8:32 PM EDT2018-05-22 00:32:31 GMT
    Monday, May 21 2018 8:46 PM EDT2018-05-22 00:46:28 GMT

    Great Falls Public Schools broke ground on the 37 million dollar expansion project at Great Falls High today. The project includes what the district is calling the new hub of their building between the main campus and the south campus, which will include new teaching areas, modified classrooms, and mechanical and electrical updates. Numerous people spoke about the importance of this project, but Mayor Bob Kelly said this will forever change the history of education in Great Falls. ...

    Great Falls Public Schools broke ground on the 37 million dollar expansion project at Great Falls High today. The project includes what the district is calling the new hub of their building between the main campus and the south campus, which will include new teaching areas, modified classrooms, and mechanical and electrical updates. Numerous people spoke about the importance of this project, but Mayor Bob Kelly said this will forever change the history of education in Great Falls. ...

  • NewsMore>>

  • 1 Killed in 2 vehicle crash on I-15

    1 Killed in 2 vehicle crash on I-15

    Sunday, May 20 2018 1:50 PM EDT2018-05-20 17:50:53 GMT
    Monday, May 21 2018 7:41 PM EDT2018-05-21 23:41:41 GMT

    Around 11:30 am on Sunday, scanner traffic indicated a rollover crash had occurred in the southbound lane of Interstate 15 near Emerson Junction.

    Around 11:30 am on Sunday, scanner traffic indicated a rollover crash had occurred in the southbound lane of Interstate 15 near Emerson Junction.

  • Woman attacked by bear

    Woman attacked by bear

    Thursday, May 17 2018 5:49 PM EDT2018-05-17 21:49:33 GMT
    Thursday, May 17 2018 5:53 PM EDT2018-05-17 21:53:18 GMT

    According to a press release from Fish, Wildlife, & Parks, a bear attack has been reported in a remote section of the Cabinet Mountains south of Libby. 

    According to a press release from Fish, Wildlife, & Parks, a bear attack has been reported in a remote section of the Cabinet Mountains south of Libby. 

  • Public meeting to discuss Missoula Co flooding set for Monday

    Public meeting to discuss Missoula Co flooding set for Monday

    Sunday, May 13 2018 2:12 PM EDT2018-05-13 18:12:49 GMT
    Sunday, May 13 2018 2:16 PM EDT2018-05-13 18:16:49 GMT

    According to a Facebook post from Missoula County 9-1-1, there is a public meeting scheduled for 6:00 pm on Monday at Hawthorne Elementary in Orchard Homes to discuss flooding. Hawthorne Elementary is located at 2835 S 3rd Street W in Missoula.

    According to a Facebook post from Missoula County 9-1-1, there is a public meeting scheduled for 6:00 pm on Monday at Hawthorne Elementary in Orchard Homes to discuss flooding. Hawthorne Elementary is located at 2835 S 3rd Street W in Missoula.

  • Flooding plagues Helena mobile home community

    Flooding plagues Helena mobile home community

    Friday, May 11 2018 8:35 PM EDT2018-05-12 00:35:03 GMT
    Friday, May 11 2018 11:14 PM EDT2018-05-12 03:14:57 GMT

    A makeshift levee that was holding back floodwaters at a mobile home park collapsed overnight, opening up the floodgates even more. 

    A makeshift levee that was holding back floodwaters at a mobile home park collapsed overnight, opening up the floodgates even more. 

Powered by Frankly
Copyright - All content © 2001 - 2018. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.