Current Forest Service News and Events

Current Forest Service News and Events, Forest Service News Articles.
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A dynamic forest floor
Walk along the beach after a winter storm and you'll see a shore littered with wracks of giant kelp, some 30 to 40 feet long -- evidence of the storm's impact on coastal kelp forests. (2021-02-22)

Researchers demonstrate new method to track genetic diversity of salmon, trout
Scientists at Oregon State University and the U.S. Forest Service have demonstrated that DNA extracted from water samples from rivers across Oregon and Northern California can be used to estimate genetic diversity of Pacific salmon and trout. (2021-02-21)

How likely are consumers to adopt artificial intelligence for banking advice?
A new study published in Economic Inquiry is the first to assess the willingness of consumers to adopt advisory services in the banking sector that are based on artificial intelligence (AI). (2021-02-18)

Wolves prefer to feed on the wild side
When there is a choice, wolves in Mongolia prefer to feed on wild animals rather than grazing livestock. This is the discovery by a research team from the University of Göttingen and the Senckenberg Museum Görlitz. Previous studies had shown that the diet of wolves in inland Central Asia consists mainly of grazing livestock, which could lead to increasing conflict between nomadic livestock herders and wild predatory animals like wolves. The study has been published in the journal Mammalian Biology. (2021-02-18)

A (pollen-free) sigh of relief for Japan: The genetics of male sterility in cedar trees
Pollen from Cryptomeria japonica, or Japanese cedar, is widely known to cause allergies. But, male-sterile trees are known to be devoid of pollen. Now, researchers from the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute, Japan, have studied the genetic variations in the male sterility gene (MS1) in these trees. This can help in selectively breeding male-sterile plants to counter the discomfort caused by pollen allergies and overcome the need to stay indoors during the pollen season. (2021-02-17)

Vets' depression, social support & psychological resilience play role in later well being
Veterans who experienced the combination of low depression, high social support and high psychological resilience as they left military service were most likely to report high well-being a year later. (2021-02-17)

Poking the paradigm
Deprive a mountain range of its wolves, and soon the burgeoning deer population will strip its slopes bare. ''I now suspect that just as a deer herd lives in mortal fear of its wolves, so does a mountain live in mortal fear of its deer,'' wrote ecologist Aldo Leopold in his landmark 1949 title ''A Sand County Almanac.'' (2021-02-17)

Breakthrough in the fight against spruce bark beetles
For the first time, a research team led by Lund University in Sweden has mapped out exactly what happens when spruce bark beetles use their sense of smell to find trees and partners to reproduce with. The hope is that the results will lead to better pest control and protection of the forest in the future. (2021-02-16)

New dataset opens Estonian soil information for versatile use
A comprehensive database of Estonian soils and a map application has been completed in cooperation with researchers of the University of Tartu and the Estonian University of Life Sciences. The database makes Estonian soil information easily accessible and can be used from local farm-scale to national-level big data statistical analysis and machine-learning models. (2021-02-16)

RUDN University biologists studied the effect of jungles on global warming
Biologists from RUDN University described the role of tropical rainforests in the production of methane, the second most harmful greenhouse gas after CO2. It turned out that some areas of rainforests not only consumed methane but also emitted it. (2021-02-16)

More trees do not always create a cooler planet, Clark University geographer finds
New research by Christopher A. Williams, an environmental scientist and professor in Clark University's Graduate School of Geography, reveals that deforestation in the U.S. does not always cause planetary warming, as is commonly assumed; instead, in some places, it actually cools the planet. A peer-reviewed study by Williams and his team, ''Climate Impacts of U.S. Forest Loss Span Net Warming to Net Cooling,'' published today (Feb. 12) in Science Advances. (2021-02-12)

Protected areas see continued deforestation but at a reduced rate, OSU research shows
A survey of more than 18,000 land parcels spanning 2 million square miles across 63 countries shows that a ''protected area'' designation reduces the rate of deforestation but does not prevent it. (2021-02-11)

Scientists propose three-step method to reverse significant reforestation side effect
Reforestation efforts using a monoculture of a fast-growing tree species, while effective, significantly impact the soil water content of humid, tropical regions and threatens global freshwater supplies. Scientists have now found that the transpiration rate and transpiration-related trait values are up to 10 times greater in the fast-growing species than nearby, dominant slow-growing species. The team has proposed a three-step method for ensuring reforestation efforts in tropical regions don't harm the surrounding soil water content. (2021-02-10)

Infectious disease causes long-term changes to frog's microbiome
In a rare study published this week, Andrea Jani, a researcher with the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, determined the skin microbiome of an endangered frog was altered when the frogs were infected by a specific fungus, and it didn't recover to its initial state even when the frog was cured of the infection. (2021-02-10)

Commodity farming accelerating climate change in the Amazon rainforest
Researchers report that large-scale commercial farms on deforested land in the southern Amazon result in higher temperature increases and less rainfall than small-scale farms (2021-02-09)

Combined bark beetle outbreaks and wildfire spell uncertain future for forests
Bark beetle outbreaks and wildfire alone are not a death sentence for Colorado's beloved forests--but when combined, their toll may become more permanent, shows new research from the University of Colorado Boulder. (2021-02-08)

All in the head? Brains adapt to support new species
Scientists studying forest dwelling butterflies in Central and South America have discovered that changes in the way animals perceive and process information from their environment can support the emergence of new species. The study led by the University of Bristol, and published today [9 February] in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), has implications for how new species might evolve and the underappreciated role of changes in the brain. (2021-02-08)

Odds of leaving military double after sexual assault, report finds
New RAND Research Examines the Effects of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment on Separation from the U.S. Military and finds that the odds of separation double after exposure to sexual assault. (2021-02-08)

Forests of the world in 3D
Primeval forests are of great importance for biodiversity and global carbon and water cycling. The three-dimensional structure of forests plays an important role because it influences processes of gas and energy exchange with the atmosphere, and provides habitats for numerous species. An international research team led by Göttingen University investigated the variety of different complex structures found in the world's forests, and the factors that explain this diversity. Results were published in Nature Communications. (2021-02-05)

Deforestation is stressing mammals out
By analyzing hormones that accumulate in fur, researchers found that rodents and marsupials living in smaller patches of South America's Atlantic Forest are under more stress than ones living in more intact forests. (2021-02-04)

Human-elephant conflict in Kenya heightens with increase in crop-raiding
A new study led by the University of Kent's Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE) has found that elephants living around the world-famous Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya, are crop-raiding closer to the protected area, more frequently and throughout the year but are causing less damage when doing so. (2021-02-04)

Dynamics of radiocesium in forests after the Fukushima disaster: Concerns and some hope
The 2011 nuclear disaster at Fukushima, Japan caused a great amount of radioactive cesium to spread to nearby forests. Now, in a chapter in the latest technical document of the International Atomic Energy Agency, researchers from Japan, in collaboration with experts in Europe, explore the dynamic flow of these radionuclides in forest ecosystems. Their compilation of data and analyses on radiocesium dynamics will help us develop better forest remediation strategies. (2021-02-03)

New study strengthens claims Richard III murdered 'the Princes in the Tower
King Richard III's involvement in one of the most notorious and emotive mysteries in English history may be a step closer to being confirmed following a new study by Professor Tim Thornton of the University of Huddersfield. (2021-02-01)

Reindeer lichens are having more sex than expected
Scientists thought that reindeer lichens (moss-looking organisms that form a major part of reindeer diets) reproduced mainly asexually by cloning themselves. But it turns out, reindeer lichens are having a lot more sex than scientists expected. In a new study, researchers found that the reindeer lichens they examined have unexpected levels of genetic diversity, indicating that the lichens have been doing more gene-mixing with each other than the scientists would have guessed. (2021-01-29)

Neural network has learned to identify tree species
Skoltech scientists have developed an algorithm that can identify various tree species in satellite images. Commercial forest taxation providers and their end-users, including timber procurers and processors and forest industry entities, can use the new technology for quantitative and qualitative assessment of wood resources in leased areas. Also, this solution enables quick evaluations of underdeveloped forest areas in terms of investment appeal. (2021-01-28)

Secrets of traumatic stress hidden in the brain are exposed
Study explores lateralization changes in resting state brain network functional connectivity. Among military service members and Veterans with symptoms of traumatic stress, asymmetries of network and brain region connectivity patterns were identified prior to usage of HIRREM. A variety of changes in lateralized patterns of brain connectivity were identified post intervention. These laterality findings may inform future studies of brain connectivity in traumatic stress disorders, with potential to point to mechanisms of action for successful intervention. (2021-01-27)

Forests with diverse tree sizes and small clearings hinder wildland fire growth
A new 3D analysis shows that wildland fires flare up in forests populated by similar-sized trees or checkerboarded by large clearings and slow down where trees are more varied. (2021-01-27)

OSU researchers prove fish-friendly detection method more sensitive than electrofishing
Delivering a minor electric shock into a stream to reveal any fish lurking nearby may be the gold standard for detecting fish populations, but it's not much fun for the trout. Scientists at Oregon State University have found that sampling stream water for evidence of the presence of various species using environmental DNA, known as eDNA, can be more accurate than electrofishing, without disrupting the fish. (2021-01-21)

Scientists discover link between nicotine and breast cancer metastasis
Scientists at Wake Forest School of Medicine have found that nicotine promotes the spread of breast cancer cells into the lungs. (2021-01-20)

Bees respond to wildfire aftermath by producing more female offspring
Researchers have found that the blue orchard bee, an important native pollinator, produces female offspring at higher rates in the aftermath of wildfire in forests. (2021-01-14)

Need to reduce work-related stress? It's a walk in the park
Research from the University of Tsukuba examined the relationship between ''sense of coherence'' (a quality indicative of stress-coping ability) and frequency of walking in forests or greenspaces. The aim was to find easy coping devices for workplace stress. Forest/greenspace walking at least once a week was found to correlate with those with a stronger sense of coherence. The findings suggest the benefits of walking in urban greenspaces or in forests to help with stress management. (2021-01-13)

Smithsonian scientists reduce uncertainty in forest carbon storage calculations
Helene Muller-Landau, staff scientist was invited to write an authoritative review about carbon storage in forests. Her team combed through existing studies and came up with some novel conclusions of their own. (2021-01-13)

Nurse involvement promotes discussion of advanced care planning during office visits
Most doctors would agree that advanced care planning (ACP) for patients, especially older adults, is important in providing the best and most appropriate health care over the course of a patient's life. (2021-01-11)

New strategy to fight botulinum toxin - expert available
Published research shows a new ''Trojan horse'' approach that produces strong antidotal efficacy in treating lethal botulism. (2021-01-06)

Novel method identifies areas most suitable for conservation of black lion tamarin
The researchers used modeling to show which areas are suitable in terms of forest cover and climate for occupation by the endangered species, which is endemic to the state of São Paulo. Their study is a contribution to translocation initiatives that move groups of these animals to areas from which the species has disappeared. (2021-01-05)

Subscriptions to satellite alerts linked to decreased deforestation in Africa
Deforestation dropped by 18 percent in two years in African countries where organizations subscribed to receive warnings from a new service using satellites to detect decreases in forest cover in the tropics. (2021-01-04)

Alert system shows potential for reducing deforestation, mitigating climate change
Forest loss declined 18% in African nations where a new satellite-based program provides free alerts when it detects deforestation activities. (2021-01-04)

Droughts, viruses and road networks: Trends that will impact our forests
A new UCPH study assembled an array of experts to highlight major trends that will impact the world's forests, and the people living around them, in the decade ahead. These trends include drought, viral outbreaks and vast infrastructure expansions across the globe. According to the researchers, a global strategy for human-nature interaction must be developed if we intend on ensuring the survival of both. (2020-12-22)

It's electrifying! This is how Earth could be entirely powered by sustainable energy
Can you imagine a world powered by 100% renewable electricity and fuels? It may seem fantasy, but a collaborative team of scientists has just shown this dream is theoretically possible - if we can garner global buy-in. The study explores what changes are needed in our energy mix and consumption patterns if we are to achieve 100% renewability in a way that supports everyone and the myriad of life on our planet. (2020-12-22)

Better learners in collared flycatchers are more likely to imitate competitors
Researchers have shown for the first time in wild birds that the capacity to use information from competing species when choosing a nest site depend partly on individual cognitive ability. In the collared flycatcher, females that learned to solve a cognitive task faster were more likely to copy the nest site choices of great and blue tits, species that breed in the same area and forage on the same insects. (2020-12-22)

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