Blue Park Spruce Beetle Salvage Project approved

CREEDE, Colo., September 18, 2017 – Divide District Ranger Martha Williamson signed the decision notice approving the Blue Park Spruce Beetle Salvage Project on Wednesday, September 12. This timber management project is located on the Rio Grande National Forest about 10 miles southeast of Creede in the Blue and Long Park area.

“The Blue Park Spruce Beetle Salvage Project will recover the value of dead and dying trees while supporting local and regional economies with a stable supply of forest products,” said Williamson.

Ms. Williamson approved the proposed action analyzed in the environmental assessment. The proposed action allows for harvesting dead and dying trees on approximately 3,200 acres of forest lands, yielding about 13 million board feet of sawtimber, or enough timber to provide all the wood products needed to construct more than 430 homes.

Approximately 22 miles of public forest roads will be maintained during the project and up to 13 miles of new or existing temporary roads will be re-opened or constructed. All temporary roads will be closed, stabilized and seeded with a native grass mix following the harvest activities.

Spruce beetles have infested more than 600,000 acres of spruce-fir forest on the Rio Grande National Forest. The Forest salvages dead and dying spruce trees for human benefit in areas designated for timber management as long as the trees are useable for commercial purposes. Surveys are conducted following harvesting activities to identify areas without adequate natural regeneration of young trees. These areas are then planted with seedlings grown in a nursery from seeds previously collected from local trees.

For more information concerning the Blue Park Spruce Beetle Salvage Project, visit the Rio Grande National Forest projects webpage at http://www.fs.usda.gov/projects/riogrande/landmanagement/projects or call the Divide Ranger District office at 719-657-3321.

-USDA-

USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.