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not spend anything for the protection of private timber, but only for the protection of its own timber, by the removal of a common nuisance and the menace that beetles will reinfest any area that may be cleaned up unless the whole job is done simultaneously. We have had some pretty bitter experience with these pine-destroying beetles in the past. Nearly 2,000,000,000 feet of timber was wiped out in the Black Hills of South Dakota by a similar infestation, and that infestation, while combated by Government agencies, had reached such a stage that an enormous proportion of the work done was not very effective.
VALUE OF TIMBER IN INTESTED AREA.
The CHAIRMAN. What is the value of the Government timber in this area ?
Col. GREELEY. The Government timber in this area, all told, represents approximately 15,000,000,000 feet, and I would say that it has a fair value of $3 per thousand feet, so that it represents $15,000,000
METHOD OF COMBATING BEETLE.
Mr. ANTHONY. How do you fight this beetle!
Col. GREELEY. The infested trees where the active swarms are located must be cut down while the beetles are in the larva 'stage in the inner bark. The bark is peeled off and either burned or exposed to the sunlight, so that the larvae will be killed. We have had the very effective help of the Bureau of Entomology, which of course represents the scientific end of this job, and their experts furnish technical advice as to how the work shall be done. We have had from them a very effective demonstration of the possibility of stopping an attack of this character in one of the national forests in Cálifornia, which contained some very valuable timber, and we were able with the funds available for that forest to clean up two townships, where a small infestation had gotten started, under the direction and with the cooperation of the Bureau of Entomology. That country has now been made practically 100 per cent free.
The CHAIRMAN. How long since was that?
The CHAIRMAN. Is there any possibility of a renewal of that infestation ?
Col. GREELEY. So far as we can judge, there is no serious possibility. There may be a few swarms of beetles that were not reached. Normally, of course, their natural enemies, such as the woodpecker and other birds, take care of those insects, but we have gotten it now to the point where if any reinfestation does appear it will be a very small affair and can be very quickly wiped out.
Mr. ANTHONY. Are only certain isolated trees attacked, or are the trees generally infested in an area?
Col. GREELEY. It varies. The beetles upon reaching the adult stage will swarm and perhaps move as much as half a mile, but just what directs their location upon a particular tree or group of trees I am unable to say. Over the greater part of this area there are just a few trees here and there infested.
Mr. ANTHONY. So you do not have to wipe out any extended areas?
Col. GREELEY. No, sir; there will be no extensive destruction of timber in the process of destroying these pests. It will be a case of locating the trees that are infested, catting them down on the ground before the beetles swarm, and then ripping the bark away and exposing the larvæ to the sunlight so that they may be killed.
Mr. ANTHONY. Can you use the tree after cutting it down? Col. GREELEY. In some cases, if there is any market for it, we can sell it.
Mr. BYRNs. Is any great damage being done now, or is it rapidly increasing?
Col. GREELEY. Damage is being done to-day on this whole area of public and private lands, containing about 1,000,000,000 feet of timber.
The CHAIRMAN. What effect does the beetle have on the tree, and how rapidly does the beetle itself propagate?
Col. GREELEY. The adult beetles bore through the bark, and start cutting cells and passageways in the inner bark, next to the sap wood, and, in fact partly in the sap wood. When the swarm is of sufficient size or when there is a sufficient number of swarms lighting on the same tree, that process results in the girdling of the tree.
The CHAIRMAN. How long does it take to do that?
Col. GREELEY. In a serious infestation, trees will often be killed in a single year. On the other hand, it not infrequently happens that a small swarm will light on a tree and will not be sufficient to girdle it, and the tree suffers no serious injury. These bugs move apparently in cycles and when an infestation is once started our experience shows it is very apt to reach very large proportions and wipe out an immense amount of timber before it subsides from natural causes. The science of the thing has not been completely worked out, but all of the scientific data to date indicates that we are just at the beginning of an infestation similar to the one in the Black Hills and in other portions of the country which wrought tremendous damage.
Mr. Wood. How long has this beetle been known in this country?
Col. GREELEY. The Bureau of Entomology has been studying this beetle for certainly some 25 years and that Bureau has been gradually establishing its habits and life history.
Mr. Wood. Then this beetle is not a recent discovery?
Col. GREELEY. He is a little brown beetle not over three-sixteenths of an inch long in the adult stage. He swarms by the millions and his habit of seeking the inner bark of trees as a place to lay his eggs makes him a pest.
Mr. Byrns. Does he confine his operations to one class of timber? Col. GREELEY. One species of timber as a rule. Mr. BYRNS. Are they having some sort of an infestation in other States than the two you have mentioned ?
Col. GREELEY. Yes; there are similar infestations of these beetles, or beetles very much like them, in a number of the western States. In the national forests, as a general thing, it is one of the things we are watching, and one of the requirements of our field organization is to jump upon these infestations and extinguish them at the very incipiency before they reach any such proportions as here. For
example, we have a small infestation on our hands now in northern Arizona, partly within the Grand Canyon National Park and partly within the national forest. We expect to wipe that out, in cooperation with the National Park Service, with our regular organization; it will not require any special appropriation. But this proposition here has reached such an extended scale and it involves the element of cooperation with private owners—that we believe it is essential that the Government do its part in getting rid of a common menace.
Mr. ANDERSON. At what time of the year is this work of eradication done?
APPROPRIATION TO BE MADE AVAILABLE DURING 1923.
Col. GREELEY. It must be done in the spring of the year and during the summer when the beetles swarm. There is one suggestion wish to make in reference to the language of the item, which would make this fund available during the fiscal year 1923 as well as during the remainder of the fiscal year 1922.
Mr. ANDERSON. You expect, then, to clean up the infestation with this appropriation? You do not expect to ask for an additional sum for 1923 ?
Col. GREELEY. We expect to clean up the infestation with this appropriation; yes, sir.
Mr. ANDERSON. What advantage would there be in commencing the work before the beginning of the next fiscal year?
Col. GREELEY. In order to clean up the bugs in the whole area before they swarm, which is usually in the month of August, we must establish camps and begin work just as early in the spring as possible; that means that the actual job of cutting the trees and killing the insects must begin by the 1st of April, and be continued until the whole area is cleaned out. We hope to get it all done before the insects swarm, which is in the latter part of the summer or early fall.
Mr. Wood. You say you expect to get the work done. Do you mean you are going to exterminate all of those bugs?
Col. GREELEY. We can with a good organization and with the private owners doing their part. You see, half of this job will be paid for by the private owners.
Mr. Wood. Suppose you were cleaning that business up and you find a tree that is badly infested; I do not suppose all of those bugs are on one tree, and that being so, is it not possible that some of the bugs would be so scattered that a few would be left over for seed; that is, if you do not cut down the particular tree on which they have located ?
Col. GREELEY. Under the habits of this beetle, the swarms are usually concentrated in large masses; that is his way of doing business; they do not spread out as some other insects do, but they concentrate in large masses. By going in there in the spring of the year, next spring, we can detect from the foliage the trees that are infested.
Mr. Wood. If they are infested to the extent of affecting them, but you are talking about extermination, and it is a pretty big job to exterminate any kind of a bug, because you are never sure that you have gotten rid of all of them. It is the same as with potato bugs and bugs of that kind; there are always one or two left over for seed.
Col. GREELEY. Well, undoubtedly there will have to be a certain amount of clean-up work in this area after the first job is handled.
The CHAIRMAN. How did you arrive at the conclusion that $150,000 was the amount necessary for this work?
Col. GREELEY. An expert of the Bureau of Entomology went over the whole thing with two or three Forest Service men; they made an estimate of the amount of infested timber and an estimate of the cost of felling it and stripping off the bark, and on their field work this estimate has been made.
The CHAIRMAN. Is this the first time an estimate has been made for this activity
Col. GREELEY. No, sir; we have at several different times requested the inclusion of an item in our regular budget for the combating of various insects, but it has not been granted. We have, however, done similar work with our regular appropriations at several different points, and have wiped out a number of incipient infestations in that way. But this proposition is too big to handle without help.
Mr. Sisson. Let us follow Mr. Wood's question.
The CHAIRMAN. Let me call his attention to this phase of the situation. I notice that the current agricultural appropriation bill provides as follows:
For investigations of insects affecting forests, $55,000: . Provided, That $15,000 shall be used for preventing and combatting infestations of insects injurions to forest trees on and near the national forests, independently or in cooperation with other branches of the Federal Government, with States, counties, municipalities, or with private
That is the first appropriation that has been made, and I suppose that covers this activity, does it not?
Col. GREELEY. That was an appropriation made for the Bureau of Entomology, and I do not know of any earlier appropriation, Mr. Chairman, using that language, but our solicitor told us years ago that the authority of the Secretary of Agriculture to protect the national forests under the general language contained in the Forest Service appropriation was ample to justify the eradication of timberdestroying insects, just as it was to put out forest fires,
The CHAIRMAN. I do not think there is any question about the fundamental law giving that authority, but the point which arises is that you made an estimate for $150,000, which was considered during the consideration of the last regular appropriation bill, and that was intended to cover an entire year, while this contemplates the use of $150,000 in five or six months.
Col. GREELEY. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. That would seem to double the amount by cutting the time in two.
Col. GREELEY. It is just such a case as might happen if you had an outbreak of bubonic plague in New Orleans or at some other point; it is a local situation distinctly.
The CHAIRMAN. If this authority is granted do you think this will be a continuing activity on the part of the department?
Mr. GALLIVAN. May I call attention to the fact that this is for two States only; the money is to be spent in Oregon and California.
The CHAIRMAN. Yes.
Col. Greeley. We are putting this situation up to you as a specific situation without reference to the general activity of the Forest
Service in protecting the national timber lands from insects. As a matter of fact, that is a continuing activity and we have been doing it for upwards of a dozen years.
The CHAIRMAN. That is so; but this is special.
Col. GREELEY. This is a special clean-up job which we hope can be disposed of under this single item.
Mr. KELLEY. If you had obtained the appropriation of $150,000 in the regular bill, I judge from what you said a moment ago that you probably would not have started to spend it until the springthat is, until next April.
Col. GREELEY. Normally the spring of the year is the season when effective work can be done in combating insects of this character. There is one point there that you will appreciate, that this sum of $150,000 is designed to protect all of the public lands involved,
The CHAIRMAN. In that locality?
Cod. GREELEY. It includes the Indian reservations and includes the unreserved public lands as well as the national forests. The Secretary of the Interior has concurred in having the matter handled in this way, although a part of the land is under his jurisdiction and not under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Agriculture. The whole point is this: Here is an area which contains 10,000,000,000 feet of virgin pine timber; it is one of the best bodies of pine timber left anywhere in the United States; half of it is in private ownership, roughly, and the other half is in public ownership. The value of the whole thing is probably $30,000,000, and this infestation threatens to wipe out a large portion of that value. The private owners are prepared to meet the situation, but they can not act in the nature of the case unless the Government cooperates with them and does its share in cleaning up its land.
The CHAIRMAX. What proportion of the timber would have to be cut to eliminate this infestation and what would be its salable value ? Has anybody made an investigation of that?
Col. GREELEY. I can not say offhand what proportion of the timber would have to be cut, but probably not over 4 or 5 per cent, widely scattered.
The CHAIRMAN. Four or 5 per cent of 10,000,000,000 feet?
Col. GREELEY. Yes. Some of it would have a salable value and some would not.
Mr. BYRNS. I take it that in order to have this kind of work effective it is necessary to have a certain amount of research work.
Col. GREELEY. Yes, sir.
Mr. Byrus. Of course, that would be preliminary to the actual expenditure of money for the eradication of this pest, and I wondered whether or not such researches had been made as to convince you and others who would have charge of this work that the expenditure of this amount of money would really be effective, or whether or not it would be necessary to make other researches in order to know that the money spent was going to accomplish the purpose.
Col. GREELEY. The Bureau of Entomology has had some special experts in California and Oregon for the past 10 years studying various insects and they have done a lot of practical work; they have helped us clean up several areas in the national forests and that has been very effectively done; they have helped a number of