Portions of Mississippi forest to get beetle-fighting effort through farm bill

A battle against a growing southern pine beetle infestation in Mississippi’s Tombigbee National Forest will be fought by the U.S. Forest Service using designations authorized in the 2014 farm bill.

The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) yesterday officially designated portions of the Tombigbee National Forest as a landscape-scale insect and disease treatment area that is subject to expedited environmental and administrative requirements.

Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), ranking member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said the designation of the Trace Unit of the Tombigbee National Forest in Chickasaw County allows the USFS to work with state and private landowners to develop and implement restoration projects to overcome insect or disease threats.

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