Tag » Forestry

Small-Scale Science
October 11, 2014

Small-Scale Science

Pint-sized humans study tiny birds facing big problems

Little kids have a lot in common with hummingbirds. Both are small in size, quick in motion and fond of sugar. Plus, kids think hummingbirds are cool. So pairing Oregon schoolchildren with the feisty, orange-throated hummers that share their Willamette Valley habitat seemed like a scientific and educational slam-dunk to ornithologist Matt Betts, a researcher […]


Through the Needle
January 23, 2014

Through the Needle

Disease reduces Douglas-fir growth, costs more than $200 million annually

On the surface of a Douglas-fir needle, the spore of a fungal pathogen, Phaeocryptopus gaeumannii, germinates and sends forth threads (hyphae). It matures into an organism that will grow inside the needle and reproduce. By interfering with the tree’s ability to exchange air and water, it shuts down photosynthesis. Thus starts a disease known as […]


Connective Tissue
May 22, 2013

Connective Tissue

Hope grows where facts and values intersect

When Michael P. Nelson talks about his work, he mentions carcasses and cadavers to a startling degree — startling because Nelson is not a physician or a veterinarian or even a biologist. He’s a philosopher. So at first glance, necropsy seems an odd topic of discourse.  But it starts to make sense when you notice […]


Flight Plan
May 21, 2013

Flight Plan

UAV technology can create jobs, save money and lives

UAVs can help manage wildfires, support a search-and-rescue mission, plant trees to avoid wind or heat damage, monitor wildlife, improve irrigation, detect crop-disease outbreaks and gauge environmental health.


Roots of Relationship
February 26, 2013

Roots of Relationship

Under the pine needles lies one of the secrets to forest health

The summer is warm and sunny in Corvallis, but my travels draw me east. Over and past the Cascades is an open land where the cold sparkling waters of a river flow north, and the sweet smell of Ponderosa pine blends with the fresh scent of lodgepole — the Deschutes National Forest. My one-person tent […]


State of Change: Seedlings for Evergreens
February 17, 2012

State of Change: Seedlings for Evergreens

“Adaptive management strategies may assist plants in adapting to future climate changes, but will be challenged by the long life-cycles of many Oregon tree species.”
– Oregon Climate Assessment Report


Connected by climate
January 4, 2012

Connected by climate

Fish bones and tree rings reveal ecological see-saw

Fish bones aren’t exactly the most prized portion of the catch of the day. Encountering a nearly translucent sliver in a grilled fillet is at best an annoyance and at worst a choking hazard. But for one Oregon State University researcher, certain fish bones are immensely valuable. Bryan Black, an associate professor at OSU’s Hatfield […]


Carbon Sink
September 23, 2011

Carbon Sink

Forests can absorb more U.S. carbon than previously thought

Oregon State University forestry scientists have a habit of redefining the conversation about carbon and forests. Professors Beverly Law, Mark Harmon and their colleagues have demonstrated that old-growth stands on the west side of the Cascades store as much carbon or more than that held in tropical rain forests. In 2009, Law reported that forests […]


October 10, 2010

Land “evapotranspiration” taking unexpected turn: huge parts of world are drying up

The soils in large areas of the Southern Hemisphere, including major portions of Australia, Africa and South America, have been drying up in the past decade.


DIRT Camp
September 30, 2010

DIRT Camp

Scott Sell earned a paycheck on the way to his degree.


The Persistence of Species
July 17, 2010

The Persistence of Species

An ecologist seeks clues to forest biodiversity

In the tropics of Costa Rica, this violet sabrewing hummingbird is helping researchers understand the effects of forest fragmentation on ecosystems.


From Problem to Profit
July 17, 2010

From Problem to Profit

Western juniper could benefit Oregon's "green" economy

Which of Oregon’s abundant tree species can provide not only logs for your vacation cabin but scented oil for your afternoon massage and flavor for your evening cocktail? Juniperus occidentalis, western juniper. This hardy species – which is endemic to the dry, rocky grasslands east of the Cascades – has heartwood that is both beautiful […]


Summer of Science
July 17, 2010

Summer of Science

Experience Oregon's beauty and bounty through OSU research

Take a hike! Summer may have arrived a bit late in the Pacific Northwest, but you can make up for lost time by exploring Oregon through OSU’s Summer of Science Google map.


Partners in Rural Vitality
April 24, 2010

Partners in Rural Vitality

OSU students and faculty team with Wallowa Resources to address rural development

Beautiful landscapes may inspire us, but it takes more than scenery to create community vitality. Wallowa County and rural communities across the country struggle with economic development, a future for their youth and the cultural tensions that arise from changing land ownership. For more than a decade, such issues in Wallowa have been addressed by Wallowa […]


The Mythbuster
April 17, 2010

The Mythbuster

OSU graduate student Jesse Abrams interviewed ranchers, homeowners, business people and local officials to understand changes unfolding in Wallowa County.


Living on Credit
February 22, 2010

Living on Credit

Forest landowners are beginning to turn carbon to cash

As Arctic ice thins, sea levels rise and glaciers recede, Ken Faulk takes stock of his trees in the Oregon Coast Range. Last summer, he began measuring his stands of Douglas fir and white oak by pounding plastic pipes into the ground to mark the centers of circles nearly 30 feet across. Working steadily in […]


Summer of Opportunity
June 23, 2009

Summer of Opportunity

Students plug into research experiences at home and abroad

Ah, summer vacation. Time to kick back, right? Not so much for OSU students who are discovering opportunities to expand their horizons. They’re modeling blood flow, studying wildlife conservation in Africa, surveying Oregon’s old-growth forests and teaching entrepreneurship.


June 23, 2009

Explore Oregon Through OSU Research

When you're out in the wilds and wonders of Oregon this summer, let OSU's research and scientific discoveries enhance your adventure

From the state’s ancient forests to its briny oceans, from its prehistoric landscapes to its fertile fields, OSU scientists are studying the complexities of nature and the impacts of human activity. They invite you to stop and visit awhile: View Oregon State University Summer of Science in a larger map Feel the soft skin of […]


April 24, 2009

Envisioning the Forest

Computer Models Combine Ecology and Economy

John Sessions likes to refer to forestry as “a bio-energy puzzle.” Like a lot of 21st-century puzzles, its solutions are digital 
and mathematical. “Forest landscape planning, as it is known today, was not possible before the advent of high-speed computers, geographic information systems, modern algorithms and graphic interfaces,” says the holder of the endowed Richard […]


April 24, 2009

Restoring the Flow

If you had happened upon Lake Creek, a tributary of Central Oregon’s Metolius River, in the fall of 2007, you might have seen Matt Shinderman and his Ecological Field Methods students standing nearly knee-deep in the water with dip nets in hand, hovering over tic-tac-toe style grids. And you might have been puzzled when they […]


Wired Watershed
January 23, 2009

Wired Watershed

Fiberoptics bring new precision to ecosystem sensing

It took a potato launcher, a canoe and a helium-filled balloon to propel a high-tech scientific enterprise during an international workshop at the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest.


Air Beneath Their Wings
September 23, 2008

Air Beneath Their Wings

Five undergraduates — five dreams. Blake Kelley sees a bright future for nuclear power and is learning all he can about reactor designs. For Hiromi Omatsu, the future is in technology that enables elderly people to stay in their own homes. Writing is Stephen Summers’ love. He publishes poetry and fiction in OSU’s student literary […]


Windows on Watersheds
April 23, 2008

Windows on Watersheds

A clear look at industrial forests

Old-style logging left scars on the landscape, but nearly 40 years ago, research in Oregon changed tree-cutting practices. Now researchers are joining landowners to update the science behind modern forest management.


April 23, 2008

OSU Watersheds Research Cooperative

Networking is key in watershed science. The WRC spurs collaboration by researchers from OSU, government and private companies. Members contribute money or in-kind resources such as land and expertise. Current WRC projects include the Hinkle Creek, Trask and Alsea projects. Funding has come from state and federal funds as well as WRC members. The WRC […]


April 23, 2008

Inside the Hinkle Creek project

Stream flow Measuring flow rate and and stream height reveals how water moves through the landscape. Researchers are also tracking stream sediment loads using the next generation of computerized water-sampling devices. Arne Skaugset’s water-quality lab analyzes more than 2,000 samples per year from the Hinkle Creek, Trask, Alsea and Oak Creek (near Corvallis) watersheds. Insects […]


Scientists to Bark Beetle: “No Vacancy”
January 23, 2008

Scientists to Bark Beetle: “No Vacancy”

You think it’s difficult to master a complex foreign language like Chinese or Greek? Try learning how to speak “bark beetle.” After about 30 years of study, researchers at OSU have done exactly that. Along with U.S. Forest Service colleagues, they’ve figured out what a particular pheromone is communicating to Douglas–fir bark beetles and now […]


April 1, 2007

Forged in Fire

Scientists want to know how fire shapes the region’s forests

In the life of a forest, fire can be a frequent and demanding companion. How often the flames visit and whether they stay low, licking the tree trunks, or flare into the canopy, becoming what foresters call a “stand replacement fire,” can determine the character of the forest for centuries. Or until the next fire. […]


April 1, 2007

Nature’s Glue

Kaichang Li teaches soybeans to act like shellfish.

Soy may help prevent cancer not only on your kitchen table but also in your kitchen table. Across campus from OSU’s Linus Pauling Institute, where nutrition scientists have been studying soybeans’ place in a healthful diet (see “The Zinc Link,” page 22), another OSU scientist has found a way to use those same protein-rich beans […]


April 1, 2007

Growing Technology

From microbes to plants, OSU researchers are leveraging biological materials to develop a variety of new products. Here are some highlights: Cellulose Power Professor Michael Penner in the Department of Food Science and Technology is studying one of the holy grails of the bio-based fuel industry: the economical conversion of woody plant materials into ethanol […]


High Alert
April 1, 2007

High Alert

Large carnivores promote healthy ecosystems by keeping browsers on edge

In a remote corner of Zion National Park, a small herd of mule deer browse quietly. Through the sun-dappled canyon burbles North Creek, its waters cool and clear, its banks green and reedy, alive with frogs, butterflies and bird-song. But this pastoral scene in southern Utah has a dark subtext, subtle yet unmistakable in the […]