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Whitebark Pine Restoration Planned

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The Buffalo Ranger District of the Bridger-Teton National Forest has released an Environmental Assessment for the Grouse Mountain Whitebark Pine Restoration Project.  The goal of that project would be to remove trees that are competing with surviving whitebark pines, and create openings where new whitebark pine seedlings can become established, as well as planting whitebark pine seedlings and prescribed burning.  Whitebark pine is an ecologically vital species in high-elevation forests which has been greatly reduced throughout its range due to mountain pine beetle, white pine blister rust, and competition from other tree species in the wake of altered fire regimes.  Whitebark pine seeds are an important food source for grizzly bears.  The proposed project area is near Spread Creek, in a grizzly bear recovery management area under the Bridger-Teton National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan of 1990.

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