Forest Service Seeks Comments on Bark Beetle Plan

Laramie, WY – The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposal to cut trees in the Medicine Bow National Forest to deal with an infestation of bark beetles.

Acting Laramie District Ranger Tom Florich says that pine bark beetle attacks on lodgepole pine and spruce bark beetle attacks on spruce stands have increased dramatically in the area, generally southwest of Foxpark. The town of Foxpark is a private inholding in the forest.

The Forest Service proposes to cut beetle-killed trees and reduce brushy vegetation and dead trees on 4,370 acres of Spruce Gulch.

The project boundaries are from Foxpark to Mountain Home and west to the Platte River wilderness area. The Forest Service hopes the project will prevent beetles from spreading across the forest and onto private inholdings.

The Forest Service is planning to prepare an environmental impact statement on the project, and is seeking public comments on what issues to analyze. Comments are due by February 15th.