2011 Natural Regeneration and Pre-Planting Surveys in the Purdy Fire Area

Project: Natural Regeneration and Pre-Planting Surveys in the Purdy Fire Area

Agency/Forest or Park/District: Shoshone National Forest (SNF), Wind River Ranger District

Project coordinator: Ellen Jungck

Contact: Ellen Jungck, Zone TMA/Silviculturist, Shoshone NF, Wind River and Washakie Ranger Districts, PO Box 186, Dubois, WY 82513, Phone: 307-455-4164, E-Mail: ejungck@fs.fed.us


Shoshone National Forest, NF foundations, USFS Region 1 whitebark pine Restoration

Source of funding /amount

FHP: $1000

Supplemental funding: $9,720 from SNF, RTRT and NFVW funds in FY 2011.  Additional funding provided by SNF in FY 2012 and 2013 (~$14,400) to complete all surveys within the Purdy Fire area.

Dates of restoration efforts:

 Natural regeneration surveys/pre-planting surveys were conducted in fiscal years 2011-2013. Project completion was in FY 2013.


Conduct five-year natural regeneration and pre-planting surveys on non-salvaged areas of the Purdy Fire to determine appropriate places for whitebark pine restoration (planting) and to determine the percent plantable ground within restoration areas.

Acres/ha treated

~1156 acres out of 2105 acres in FY2011.  All acreage completed by FY2013.


A two- or three-person seasonal crew will be used to conduct natural regeneration and pre-planting surveys as outlined in section 2.73 of Forest Service Handbook (FSH) 2409.17 (Silvicultural Practices), pages 32-38, utilizing the Pre-Planting and Reforestation Quick Plot Survey Forms shown in exhibits 03-04. The latter form will be modified to include more natural regeneration species, as no previous planting will have occurred since the fire. Plots will be established for each forest vegetative site polygon within the fire perimeter (outside of salvaged areas) at a one percent sample (based on acreage). For example, if a site is 100 acres, a 1-acre sample will be needed. Approximately 50 1/50th-acre plots would be needed distributed across the site. The appropriate number of plots will be distributed by site on a grid through ArcView or ArcMap using the DNR Garmin software. The point and site polygon layers will be downloaded into Trimble or Garmin GPS units. GPS units will be used to navigate to plot centers to ensure random plot location. 1/50th acre plots will be established for collecting data on both pre-planting and natural regeneration surveys initially. If a lot of natural regeneration is found, plot size will be dropped to 1/100th or 1/300th acre plots for natural regeneration surveys, with the same plot used across each vegetative site. Plot data will be summarized by the silviculturist as outlinedin section 2.73 of FSH 2409.17. For out year cone collection and planting, there are multi-year contracts in place that cover the GYA. The contracts have been developed in conjunction with GYCC partners as well as other neighboring forests in Region 2 (Bighorn, Nebraska) in order to make seed collection and planting more efficient over the next several years. Any money available for these efforts can be obligated to these contracts for future fiscal years, if needed. All planting will have survival surveys conducted as prescribed in sections 2.73 and 2.74 of FSH 2409.17 and entered into the FACTS Activity database for long-term monitoring purposes. In addition, all survival information will be added to a whitebark pine survival tracking database originally established by Kay Izlar and incorporated into Region 4’s whitebark pine planting guidelines. The GYCC WBP subcommittee will add to the existing database to further refine whitebark pine planting protocols (see related proposal entitled ‘Determining Whitebark Pine Seedling Survivorship Rates and Contributing Variables’).

Planting? If so, source of seedlings? Resistance?  No


The project was not completed in FY2011 due to the late snowmelt, inaccessibility (long walk-ins), a large Type II incident on the district, as well as many silvicultural/fuels contracts that needed to be administered during the same time period.  A little over half of the area was surveyed.  The remaining portion is planned for completion in the FY2012 and FY2013 field seasons.  The total acreage estimate in the original proposal was estimated (1375 acres); when survey areas were completed, actual acreage to survey was increased (2107 acres).

Of the 1156 acres surveyed in FY2011, approximately 683 acres (59%) was fully stocked and not in need of additional planting.  Four hundred seventy-three acres (41%) need additional fill-in or full planting.  All the acres have a plantable area percentage determined on them.  Of the acres that needed planting, this figure ranged from 63-95% plantable.  Whitebark pine trees were ordered (18,438) for one of the units (covering 108 acres, 95 acres plantable) for planting in FY2014.

Of the remaining acres (951) surveyed in FY2012 and FY2013, 273 acres were fully stocked, with no planting needed, 15 acres consist of poor planting sites and won’t be reforested, 218 acres are currently reforesting on their own with mixed conifer seedlings.  The remaining acres (445 acres) will need to be reforested.  Plantable area ranged between 37% and 87%.

Monitoring since completion of the project N/A


            Plans for future monitoring? N/A

Will outcome meet goals? 


Future actions/follow up? 

Planting of whitebark pine is planned for approximately 600 acres within the Purdy Fire area; planting commenced in FY2013, will continue in FY2014, and will be planned for FY2016 and beyond (road access issues in FY2015 prevent access to whitebark pine sites).    The remaining plantable acres will be planted to other species besides whitebark pine, as other species are more suitable for planting as whitebark pine will be quickly outcompeted on these sites.