Management group forming to help fight spruce beetle

By Press Release


The Public Lands Partnership (PLP) is accepting nominations of individuals who represent specific stakeholder interests to serve on a collaborative Adaptive Management Group (AMG). The primary purpose of the group will be to assist the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison (GMUG) National Forest in the implementation and monitoring of treatment projects designed to respond to the spruce beetle epidemic and decline of aspen stands occurring in specific priority areas on the GMUG. The anticipated timeframe for full implementation is anywhere from eight to 12 years.

The following interest groups have been identified to have "seats" at the AMG table to ensure diverse and consistent representation throughout the multi-year implementation process:

• County commissioners or designee -- seven seats depending on interest from counties in which projects are occurring (Delta, Hinsdale, Gunnison, Mesa, Montrose, Ouray and San Miguel);

• Environmental/conservation groups -- two seats;

• Forestry processors -- one seat;

• Forestry loggers -- one seat;

• Community member-at-large from each timber zone: -- three seats;

• Water resources -- one seat;

• Recreational user groups -- one seat;

• Wildlife and fish interests -- one seat; and

• Education -- one seat.

Some of the suggested tasks that can be expected are the following:

• Help with articulating monitoring questions

• Active engagement annually in implementation and monitoring, i.e. providing input/feedback on priority treatment areas, treatment designs -- more strategic than at overall program level

• Serve as a conduit between SBEADMR and their constituents or stakeholder group

• Having representation at the annual review with GMUG leadership team and Science Team

• Anticipate roadblocks that may arise and work with the Forest Service to resolve

Please submit your name(s) and/or an individual(s) you would recommend and contact information to Chris Miller, coordinator, and Public Lands Partnership at info@publiclandspartnership.org no later than Feb. 1.

For more information visit the GMUG National Forest website @https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=42387 or the Public Lands Partnership website at www.publiclandspartnership.org.

The annual meeting for the Spruce Beetle Epidemic Aspen Decline Management Project is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 25, from noon to 5 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Express, in Montrose. An RSVP is recommended to be assured seating.

For more information please contact Chris Miller, coordinator, Public Lands Partnership at 970-640-7076 or send request to info@publiclandspartnership.org.