Whitebark pine, one of the West’s iconic and essential species is in danger – so much so that U.S. Forest Service ecologist Bob Keane says there may someday be so few trees “we will probably name the ones we see.”
Officially, the agency and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service say the whitebark pine warrants listing as an endangered species and could very well be extinct within 100 years.
So why isn’t the high-elevation species listed as endangered? Is listing the solution to the drastically reduced number of whitebark pines? What will be the impact of climate change? What effect will this summer’s planned delisting of Yellowstone grizzly bears have on the potential whitebark listing? [Read more…]