2015 Operational Collection Baree Mountain Genetically Diverse WBP

General Project Information

Project Title: Original project name was “Operational Collection Northwest Peak Genetically Diverse WBP” but due to no cone crop and a cone crop at Baree Mountain this project is now “Operational Collection Baree Mountain Genetically Diverse WBP”.

Project Dates: 2015

Year project implementation started:

How many more years is this project expected to continue, if any?

Project Contact: (Please provide complete information for primary contact(s), e.g., name, position, phone number, email, agency name, unit/sub-unit)

Rudy Geber 406-283-7594 (rgeber@fs.fed.us) or Mike Giesey (mgiesey@fs.fed.us)

Location (Land management agency or ownership and name of geographic area(s) where project was implemented. This information should be specific enough to identify a general project location on a map but not specific enough to compromise the project.)

Kootenai NF, Libby Ranger District, Baree Mountain Genetically Diverse WPB area (T26N R31W portions of Sections 35 and 36. Principal Montana Meridian, Lincoln County, Montana)

Cooperators: (List cooperating agencies and sub-units, other companies/organizations, and individuals as needed.)


Project Funding

Funding Sources (amount FHP/amount other):

Forest Health Protection funding                       $1,500 ($3,000 minus $1,500 fire transfer)

Other funding                                                  $3,200

Total                                                               $4,700

Did Whitebark Restoration funding get used or obligated? (If not, please explain.)

$1,500 was used during recon and caging. The remainder that was planned to be used for cone collection was not available due to fire transfer.


Project Details

Scope and/or Size of Project or Treated Area: (Include a short description of the project or treatment area if helpful in understanding the scope of the project.)

Number of Acres or Other Units Treated, Monitored, or Surveyed:

20 trees over approximately 50 acres

Specific location of project or treated area(s): (If desired, add more specific project location information here, e.g., UTMs, Lat-long, specific landmark. Otherwise, indicate if more information is available by request.)

Objective(s) (from original request):

Secure seed from genetically diverse WBP population for future planting.

Planting: (Please answer the following questions if the project includes plantings or cone collections.)

Number of seedlings planted (list by location if applicable): N/A

Was the seed source screened for resistance? (If other, explain.)

These trees are within the Baree Genetically Diverse area (Mahalovich, 2011). Plus trees were selected in this area (under a different project), seed has been screened and was determined to be within the top 5 for rust resistance.

Were Plus trees used? Collections included one plus tree.


Twenty trees were caged and collected from yielding around 4 bushels of large WBP cones. It was a mid-range year for collection in this area. Overall the collection was a major success and the seed will be available for sowing this winter. Cones matured earlier than normal this year due to the hot dry weather and lack of precipitation. No WBP Restoration funding was left to collect the caged cones and in the middle of a large wildfire season on the KNF, we were still able to gather the helpers and climbers needed to complete this collection. Our original plan of utilizing YCC crew was not accomplished due to the complexities with fire season.

Project Status (Is the project complete? If not, what remains to be accomplished and when?: Yes

Will outcome meet objectives?

Yes. These cones will be used for post fire planting of WBP in the Marston Fire of 2015 and possibly other fire reforestation to be determined with post fire assessments. Good planning, good cooperation and commitment among fire managers to allow folks a day to collect cones, got this accomplished. We hope to be successful in competing for funding next year for this and the two other genetically diverse areas on the forest.


Project Follow-Up

Are there plans for monitoring or follow-up? (If not, please explain.)

Yes, this area is monitored yearly for cone crop forecasting. During this year’s collection a fair number of young cones were observed. They will become mature in FY16 and would be available for collection should there be a need for more seed or if more funding support is received for this activity.

Changes Needed or Problems Encountered:

Fire transfer affected the project budget. We were forced to accomplish the second half of this activity out of integrated and reforestation fund codes which was not desired.