Western Bark Beetle Initiative

Western Bark Beetle Initiative

The Western Bark Beetle Initiative Grant Program focuses on reducing adverse bark beetle impacts through thinning and removal of green host trees and related slash treatments, where ponderosa pine is the main host tree. Funding through this grant aims to protect high value trees and forests, create and maintain healthy stands of trees, reduce bark beetle attacks and tree mortality, encourage landowners to implement prevention and restoration projects, restore and maintain healthy ecosystems, and reduce wildland fire risk secondarily.

Grant Objectives 

•    Create and maintain healthy stands of trees

•    Ponderosa pine stand thinned to a 60-80 ft2/acre basal area to prevent bark beetle infestation. 

•    Reduce bark beetle attacks and tree mortality 

•    Reduce wildland fire risk secondarily 

•    Encourage landowners to implement prevention and restoration projects 

•    Restore and maintain healthy ecosystems 

•    Protect high value trees and forests 

Allowable Activities 

• Removal of infested pine trees: Removal of trees from the project area that are currently infested with bark beetles can help reduce the local source of infestation. 

• Thinning of green pine trees: Reducing stand density to 60-80 square feet of basal area per acre can improve tree health and reduce the likelihood of attacks from bark beetles. 

• Proper treatment of slash: Green pine slash should be properly treated to reduce the potential for attraction to bark beetles. Proper techniques include hauling green slash off site and away from host type (preferably within 30 days for treatments conducted in spring or summer), piling and burning (where safe and legal), chipping and mulching in early fall and winter for treatments conducted after peak beetle flight (May-August). These practices will reduce the potential for on-site bark beetle eruptions and the infestation of adjacent lands. It is preferred that these techniques are performed away from the Wildland Urban Interface (see Q&A for definition). Slash must be green and suitable for bark beetle brood production. Grant funding is not for treatment of dried, dead or other material not suitable for bark beetle brood production. 

What are some Grant Limitations?

This program requires 50/50 match and must be contributed by the applicant from sources other than the Federal Government. No grant funds will be distributed until

project expenditures and local match have been incurred. 

Treatment costs range from $500-$1500/acre and are based on the sum of the dollar amount requested for reimbursement as well as match. 

Treatments can only be applied on Non-Federal Lands (Private, State, County, Municipal, etc). Individuals, for-profit companies, and tribes do not qualify for direct funding

through this grant.