For Immediate Release
Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Contact for Reporters:
Kimberly Stern

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Media Tip Sheet: Colorado State University, Colorado State Forest Service and Extension Experts on Mountain Pine Beetles

FORT COLLINS - With recent concern about Colorado's mountain pine beetle epidemic, Colorado State University is providing the following experts on a variety of issues related to forest health and the effects of the beetles. The Colorado State Forest Service and Colorado State University Extension are divisions of CSU. The information is intended as a resource for reporters and is not intended for publication.

Forest health

Dan Binkley, forestry professor, is available to talk about changing conditions of Colorado forests, including ways to reduce risks of catastrophic wildfires, landscape responses to beetle outbreaks and approaches to improving forest health. To speak with Binkley, contact Kimberly Sorensen at (970) 491-0757 or

Forest pest management

Ingrid Aguayo, forest entomologist for the Colorado State Forest Service, can discuss results of the 2007 insect and disease aerial survey, which reveals the progression of various forest insect and disease infestations in Colorado. She also can talk specifically about mountain pine beetle ecology, suppression methods and forest management to mitigate mountain pine beetle impacts. To speak to Aguayo, contact Katherine Timm at (970) 491-7698 or

Robert Sturtevant, extension forestry specialist with Colorado State's Department of Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Stewardship and associate director of Colorado State's Forest Restoration Institute, can discuss mountain pine beetle management issues including preventative actions and forest management options before and after the beetle epidemic. He also can talk about other forest pest issues and general forest restoration topics. To speak with Sturtevant, contact Kimberly Sorensen at (970) 491-0757 or

Fuel management and regeneration

Frederick "Skip" Smith, professor in the Department of Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Stewardship, is available to discuss how proper fuel management is a key factor in reducing fire risk. He also specializes in silvicultural, or regeneration, treatments used to manage beetle risk and forest management response to restoring forests following beetle attacks. To speak with Smith, contact Kimberly Sorensen at (970) 491-0757 or

Chuck Dennis, assistant staff forester, and Kristin Garrison, Franktown District forester with the Colorado State Forest Service, can talk about the benefits of wildfire mitigation and forest restoration projects being implemented in ponderosa pine ecosystems on the Front Range, as well as efforts currently underway to help protect important watersheds from wildfire in these areas. To speak with Dennis or Garrison, contact Katherine Timm at (970) 491-7698 or

Public policy and forest health

Jan Hackett, forester and policy and legislative affairs program manager for the Colorado State Forest Service and lead for the Colorado Bark Beetle Cooperative, or CBBC, can speak about recent legislation that will help address the impacts of the beetle epidemic in Colorado. Other topics of expertise include the efforts of the CBBC to protect homes and communities, human life and property, watersheds and water supplies, infrastructures, and other important resource and social values. She also can talk about the CBBC's long-term efforts to develop community resilience to adapt to disturbance-driven ecosystems. To speak with Hackett, contact Katherine Timm at (970) 491-7698 or

Forest hydrology and erosion

Lee MacDonald is a professor of land-use hydrology in the Watershed Science Program at CSU. His specialty is forest hydrology, particularly the effects of fires, roads, timber harvest, bark beetles and other forest management activities on runoff and erosion at different spatial scales. He was the primary author of "Forests and Water: A State-of-the-Art Review for Colorado" and is currently serving on a National Academy of Sciences Committee on the Hydrologic Effects of Forest Management. To speak with MacDonald, contact Kimberly Sorensen at (970) 491-0757 or

Impacts on recreation and tourism

Joseph O'Leary, dean of the Warner College of Natural Resources, can discuss impacts that beetle-killed forests may have on recreation and tourism. He serves on Gov. Bill Ritter's newly created Colorado Forest Health Advisory Council, a multi-agency action group that will coordinate and lead efforts to address the mountain pine beetle epidemic and other threats to Colorado's 22 million acres of forestland. To speak with O'Leary, contact Kimberly Sorensen at (970) 491-0757 or

Colorado State University local statewide contacts:

Western Colorado impacts and control - Western region entomologist

Bob Hammon, Tri River Area Extension agent specializing in entomology and agronomy, can speak on impacts in western Colorado and efforts at control and mitigation. He has 25 years of field experience and extensive knowledge of the western region from Gunnison to Utah. To speak with Hammon, contact him at (970) 244-1834 or

Grand County's experience with the current mountain pine beetle epidemic

Ron Cousineau, Granby District forester with the Colorado State Forest Service, can address the progression of the mountain pine beetle epidemic in Grand, Summit and Eagle counties and discuss what private landowners are doing to address the impacts. He also can talk about the forest management activities conducted at Snow Mountain Ranch that helped keep the 2007 Y Fire from burning cabins on the ranch and spreading into a nearby subdivision. To speak to Cousineau, contact Katherine Timm at (970) 491-7698 or

Summit County local contact and local citizen outreach

Laura Au-Yeung, Summit County Extension director, can speak to efforts over the past several years to reach out to the county's citizens with information and training regarding safe responses to forest health issues. She has direct knowledge of local response and concern. To speak with Au-Yeung, contact her at (970) 668-4140  or

Front Range High Country local contact for citizen outreach and response

Irene Shonle, director of Extension in Gilpin County is actively involved in both informational outreach and training and the development of a local Community Wildfire Protection Plan for Gilpin County. She can speak to the county's response, current activities and citizen involvement and concerns. To speak with Shonle, contact her at (303) 582-9106 or

Park and Chafee Counties local contact for citizen outreach and response

Kurt Jones, Park and Chaffee County Extension director, has been working with citizens for more than five years regarding the local issues and responses to forest health deterioration impact and individual citizen education and response. He can speak to issues and response from citizens and the surrounding communities. To speak with Jones, contact him at (719) 539-6447 or

Routt County/Steamboat Springs local contact for citizen outreach and response

C.J. Mucklow, Routt County Extension director, has been educating and developing information for the citizens of the county and surrounding communities for several years. He can speak to immediate issues, concerns and response from citizens in this area. To speak with Mucklow, contact him at (970) 879-0825 or

John Twitchell and his colleagues on the Steamboat Springs District of the Colorado State Forest Service held a series of workshops this spring to address issues related to utilization of beetle-infested wood. He can speak to landowner questions and concerns about the use of local wood generated from forest management activities to mitigate the effects of the bark beetles. To speak with Twitchell, contact Katherine Timm at (970) 491-7698 or


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