2011 Re-measure WBP Permanent Plots in Burns

Project:  Re-measure WBP Perm Plots in Burns

Agency/Forest or Park/District: Selkirk Mountains, Idaho Panhandle National Forest

Project coordinator:  Pat Behrens

Contact:  Pat Behrens – USFS. 6286 Main St. Bonners Ferry ID, 83805.  208-267-6743 pbehrens@fs.fed.us


USDA Forest Service Forest Health Protection

Source of funding /amount

FHP: $16,000

Supplemental funding: $11,500 NFVW (NFRR)

Dates of restoration efforts

July-September 2011


Monitor the success of natural whitebark pine regeneration in prescribed burn treatments. The Selkirk WBP Restoration Project was initiated in October 2006 using prescribed fire and slashing on over 1300 acres. Permanent whitebark pine monitoring plots were established on the Ball Lakes, Russell Peak, Fisher Ridge and Farnham Ridge in August 2007. Thirty plots on each treatment area (10 plots in the “no burn”, 10 plots in the “moderate burn” and 10 plots in the “severe burn.” 120 plots total were established. First year post-treatment surveys were conducted concurrent with plot installation, which was too soon to detect any WBP regeneration.

Acres/ha treated

1300 acres


5th year measurement of 120 permanent plots

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


There was no evidence of any new germinates during this monitoring cycle.  All of the whitebark observed in was established prior to the 2007 Rx burn.

Monitoring since completion of the project

            Dates:  2011 was the first year plots were monitored

            Plans for future monitoring?  Monitoring is scheduled every five years

Will outcome meet goals?

Currently, it is too early to tell whether the restoration goals will be met.  There still appears to be adequate mature whitebark pine seed source available to support natural regeneration.

Future actions/follow up?

Planting may ultimately be necessary for restoration of the species.

Miscellaneous comments


If planting is ultimately deemed necessary to achieve restoration objectives in the Selkirks it will certainly require significant partnership dollars  In addition to anticipated high seedling costs there are the logistical concerns of physically getting seedlings to the site.  The area is mostly inaccessible from roads, open, or closed.  If helicopters, or opening closed roads, are considered for delivering seedlings consideration must be given that the majority of the planting sites are located in grizzly bear core habitat, which would require consultation with the USFWS.  These issues are not insurmountable, but they must be given detailed consideration in the planning process.

WBP Verbenone Overview (June 27, 2007)

On April 20, 2007 a helicopter survey was conducted of the treatment areas to estimate the amount of live WBP.  A summary of the data collected is listed in the table below.

Area # of live WBP treated Comments
Burton Ridge 125 Each was GPS’d
Russell Ridge 110 Beetle activity noticed
Ball Lake 101 Beetle activity noticed
Farnham Ridge 10 Beetle activity noticed all GPS’d
Fisher Peak 45 Each was GPS’d
Cut-Off 400+ @ 20 packets per acre installed

IdahoPanhandle_Behrens_2011_Pic1_Rx Burned Unit in Selkirk Mts.- Idaho- Stand level view IdahoPanhandle_Behrens_2011_Pic2_Rx Burned Unit in Selkirk Mts.-Idaho -Landscape view IdahoPanhandle_Behrens_2011_Pic3_Rx Burned Unit in Selkirk Mts.-Idaho - Stand level view IdahoPanhandle_Behrens_2011_Pic4_Rx Burned Unit in Selkirk Mts.-Idaho  - Stand level view