Guides & Case Studies

Analyzing and interpreting spatial information.

Pinyon Pine Decline

Massive forest die-off in US Southwest

Compared to the drought of the 1950s that caused significant ponderosa and pinyon pines mortality, the recent drought (1999-2009) in the southwest US was even warmer (Breshears et al. 2005). Mortality during the 1950s drought was documented on dry, often lower elevation sites, affecting older trees while the recent drought affected high elevation sites and all age classes. It caused rapid, regional-scale mortality of dominant pinyon pines (Pinus edulis) from infestations of bark beetles (Ips confusus) associated with the extreme drought stress. Regional aerial surveys...