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Comments sought for Goldspotted Oak Borer Management Project


A draft proposal for treating oak trees infected with Goldspotted Oak Borer (GSOB) is developing on the San Bernardino National Forest. GSOB are invasive insects that cause oak trees to decline in health and vigor, eventually causing oak tree mortality in the local mountains. Gone unchecked, entire populations of oak trees can be lost, potentially threatening the generational vitality of the local range of oak trees in Southern California.
“We are very excited to begin developing this long-term strategy to mitigate against the infestations threating our oak trees,” said Forest Supervisor Danelle D. Harrison. “The tools that we are proposing to use will help us detect and treat infestations as soon as reasonably possible and slow the spread of these borers.”
The project analysis area is forest wide and covers many parts of the San Bernardino and San Jacinto mountains, including recreation areas, roads, campgrounds and some trails. The strategy will include detecting, treating and potentially removing as much infected tree material as possible.
Project documents are available online at: www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=61714 (click on the “scoping” tabs) and includes more details about the proposal. The public is encouraged to provide comments to [email protected] by Aug. 31.

Goldspotted oak borer still a danger — look for indications and learn more …


So, as we all pursue the ever-compelling joys and rewards of removing all flammable materials from the 30-foot zone around our homes and structures, giving us all satisfaction in knowing we are  keeping the carpets of pine needles and burgeoning waving seas of grass from providing ground fuels for any and all potential falling embers, there is something else we can all be doing.

Spring brings the beginning of the emergence of the adult Goldspotted oak borers from the thick-barked black oak trees. The 1/16 of an inch distinctive capital D-shaped holes in the bark of the trunk and lower large branches tell us the tiny GSOB beetles are living in our most majestic old oaks.

You can help scientists still on the cutting edge of research to collect data contributing to the possibilities of learning how to control and, perhaps, stop the growing infestation and death of oaks as it spreads across our forests. As you work in your yard, examine the oaks closely.

Are there a few of these D-shaped holes? If so, the tree can be treated. There are topical insecticides that kill the emerging egg-laden females before they have a chance to take flight and further infect your own trees, your neighbors’ trees and the trees in our national forest.

Call local arborists to find out what you can do to keep your oaks alive and beautiful through the seasons.

On walks with your friends, raise awareness about the GSOB threat to our forest as you talk about and take note of any oaks that have not leafed out. Look at the leaves. Are they smaller than usual? Are they curled and deformed?

If you suspect any trees are having a problem, please call the GSOB hotline at 951-659-8328 and report the location of the tree. You, as citizen scientists, can make important contributions to the data being reported and collected.

GSOB beetles do not fly far. How, then, did they get here? The most likely case that scientists have found by observation is already-infested oak transported for firewood. Buy your firewood locally.

For more information, attend the Tree Armageddon Symposium from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 27, at the Riverside-Corona Resource Conservation District, 4500 Glenwood Drive, Building F Conference Room in Riverside. For information, visit rcrcd.org, email riverside-sanbernardino.cnps.org   or call 951-682-1901.

University of California researchers will present latest findings about spread, controls, and biology of tree pests and the diseases they vector. The event is  sponsored by the Riverside-Corona Resource Conservation District and the Riverside-San Bernardino Chapter of California Native Plant Society.

Goldspotted oak borer still a danger to Hill oaks


Dr. Tom Scott, University of California, Berkeley and Riverside, discussed the Goldspotted oak borer.
Photo by JP Crumrine

The Goldspotted oak borer has devastated oak forests in San Diego County. In some areas, oak mortality has approached 100 percent, according to Kim Corella, forest pest specialist with Cal Fire.

Gregg Bratcher, Cal Fire Riverside County unit forester.
Photo by JP Crumrine

Experts believe the GSOB migrated from Mexico to Arizona and then hitched rides in vehicles transporting firewood to San Diego County in the early and mid 2000s. By 2008 and 2009, oaks were dying in massive numbers.

In November 2012, the GSOB was found in Idyllwild. Dr. Tom Scott, with the University of California units at both Berkeley and Riverside, and others believe the insect arrived here in firewood several years earlier.

Entomologists who study the GSOB say that it is capable of flying about half a mile per day. Therefore, its migration to California, and even to Idyllwild, was most likely in firewood.

John Hawkins, Riverside County Fire chief.
Photo by JP Crumrine

“Even within Idyllwild, you shouldn’t be moving oak,” Scott stressed. “Don’t move firewood.”

Saturday at the Mountain Community Fire Safe Council session, Unit Forester Gregg Bratcher for Riverside County Fire Department and Cal Fire, reported that the GSOB has infested at least 178 oaks on the Hill. Another 29 infested or dead oaks have been found on U.S. Forest Service land, for a total of more than 200 identified GSOB-infested oaks on the Hill.

Fire Division Chief Fred Espinoza, U.S. Forest Service’s San Jacinto Ranger District. Photo by JP Crumrine

While that’s a large number, Scott stressed that this represents a 4-percent tree mortality of the oaks on the Hill. Natural mortality in an extreme drought would be about 10 percent. Cal Fire’s efforts and the numerous local volunteers, led by MCFSC, have been extremely successful in limiting the damage, according to Scott.

The adult GSOB lays the eggs in the outer bark of the oak. The larvae eat into the cambium layer of the tree. Enough larvae will damage the cambium and diminish or stop the flow of nutrients to the tree’s newest limbs and leaves.

“In essence, it’s being starved to death,” said Andrea Hefty, forest entomologist with the U.S. Forest Service. “Then in the spring, the adults emerge and feed on the crown of the tree.”

GSOB’s most likely targets are the coast live oak, the California black oak and occasionally, the canyon live oak. They prefer large-diameter trees, greater than 20 inches diameter breast high.

The U.S. Forest Service has identified 29 infested trees on the San Jacinto Ranger District. The areas range from Pine Cove to Idyllwild and include Garner Valley. Recently, more oaks in Fern Valley have been found with GSOB markers.

Patrick Reitz, Idyllwild Fire chief.
Photo by JP Crumrine

Since the discovery of the GSOB in Idyllwild in 2014, it was identified in Weir Canyon in Orange County. One year later, in 2015, it was found in Green Valley in Los Angeles County.

Compared to Idyllwild, its impact has already been greater in these areas. Of 781 oak trees in Weir Canyon, 280 have been infested. In Green Valley, 233 of 1,185 trees were infested.

After seeing the destruction the insect created in the San Diego County oak forests, the response from officials in Riverside, Los Angeles and Orange counties has been much more aggressive.

For example, Bratcher said trees identified as infested will be taken down and removed within 72 hours during the spring and summer. Currently, 31 trees found this fall will be removed before flight season this coming spring.

But entomologists and forest experts have been experimenting with treatments and removal techniques. If the bark is removed and then put through a small grinder, the firewood may be left for the property owner’s use, according to Bratcher.

GSOB Program Coordinator Kevin Turner of the University of California, Riverside, and Scott said there may be some pesticides and systemic insecticides capable of killing or limiting the adults before they emerge and fly in the spring. This might be a way to save the high-value trees but will not save heavily infested trees.

“But use someone licensed. Don’t do it yourself,” Scott added.

“The public still needs to be vigilant,” Bratcher emphasized. If a property owner has any questions about the GSOB or oaks on their property, call the GSOB hotline at 951-659-8328. MCFSC will send someone to answer questions or inspect the tree for exit holes, he stated.

The response in Idyllwild to the GSOB has been recognized elsewhere. Scott said, “You have no idea what you’re doing for the interest of the state. It’s not the palm tree that identifies California, it’s the old oak trees.”

Community meeting about Goldspotted oak borer


It’s spring. Flowers are blooming and the leaves of trees are starting to form and uncurl. It’s time for a community meeting to hear about the Goldspotted oak borer.

The Mountain Communities Fire Safe Council is holding just such a meeting at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 18, at the Idyllwild Nature Center.

This is the time of year when the oak leaves begin to appear, which means it’s the best time to examine our oaks to identify suspicious trees that may be harboring the GSOB and dying from this occupant.

“It’s time to see if the leaves are normal or if leaves are still brittle and brown,” said Edwina Scott, MCFSC executive director. “We’ll be right at the beginning of flight season.”

Riverside County Fire Department Forester Gregg Bratcher will be at the meeting to discuss the current status of local tree removal. Also, his predecessor. Kevin Turner, currently with the University of California, Riverside, Cooperative Extension program, will discuss the status of current research on GSOB habitat.

As of late March, 62 local oaks have been confirmed with GSOB infections, according to Bratcher. Although the expansion has slowed, which is good compared to the infestation and attack in San Diego County, the GSOB presence is “getting worse,” according to Scott.

The county has been concerned about the presence of the GSOB on the Hill since its identification in 2012. Third District Supervisor Chuck Washington has continued the policy of his predecessor, Jeff Stone, requesting his colleagues to renew a declaration of emergency because of the bark beetle and GSOB infestations.

“Based on the past seasons, we will look for unusual leaf characteristics, such as size or lack of leaves,” Bratcher said.

Also, Scott hopes to recruit more volunteers for oak tree inspections. Since the GSOB’s first identification on the Hill, the MCFSC has trained individuals to identify suspicious trees, which experts such as Turner and Dr. Tom Scott, also of UCR, examine for GSOB presence.

“Even if they are only willing to examine their trees and their neighborhood, we need the help,” Scott said. “I’m hoping to see the community ready to roll up its sleeves.”

Goldspotted oak borer expanding sites


D-shaped exit holes indicating infected tree.  Photo courtesy of University of California
D-shaped exit holes indicating infected tree. Photo courtesy of University of California

After only about a month, the number of confirmed oaks infested with goldspotted oak borers has surged 20 percent, to 48 from the 40 identified at July’s Mountain Area Safety Taskforce, according to Division Chief Gregg Bratcher, Cal Fire and Riverside County Fire Department forester.

Just as alarming as the rapid spread of the pest is the fear present within the community of seeking help identifying the sick and dying trees.

“I’ve heard from several sources that people don’t want to call the hotline because they’re afraid county fire will come and take the tree or trim it,” Bratcher said.

He emphasized that these actions are not permitted without the permission of the property owner. “We have no jurisdiction without permission,” he stressed.

Many inspections confirm that the oak is not infested with GSOB. In addition, Cal Fire and the Mountain Communities Fire Safe Council are compiling a database of where the infected tress are or were.

Calling the hotline to report a suspicious tree provides valuable data about the current GSOB infestation if the tree truly is infested.

“Any and all data is important to tracking and understanding the pest’s behavior,” Bratcher said. Identifying an infected tree may provide information on how quickly and when the damage is occurring, where are the “hot spots,” as well as how the infestation is moving within the community.

“If the tree is damaged enough to be cut, we’ll send a section to UCR [University of California, Riverside] to analyze it,” he added.

If property owners suspect an oak tree may be infected, They should first visit the UCR’s GSOB site at http://ucanr.edu/sites/gsobinfo/. Then call Cal Fire’s GSOB hotline at 951-659-8328.

Goldspotted oak borer inspections continue


Pat Boss (left) and Don Patterson yellow band a tree suspected of being infested with Goldspotted oak borer on Hemstreet Place on Thursday, May 16. Photo by Marshall Smith

The current count of Goldspotted oak borer infested trees stands at 11, with the majority of those in Idyllwild. On Friday, May 18, crews removed a large infested oak in Pine Cove in the 23000 block of Pine Needles Lane. Because of the size of the oak and proximity to a residence, a crane had to be used as part of the removal process.

The present CAL FIRE GSOB program pays for 100 percent removal of diseased GSOB trees. Funds are federal dollars, called a State Fire Assistance grant, and are awarded to Riverside County for hazardous fuel reduction, according to CAL FIRE Forester Chief Gregg Bratcher. There are two caveats important to local property owners: if CAL FIRE removes the trees using designated grant money, all wood must be taken away from the site. No firewood would be left for landowner. Also, grant funds, unless reauthorized, end in September, after which, landowners would be responsible for cost of infested oak removal. Removal costs, depending on tree size, location and necessary equipment can range from $1,500 to $3,000.

As local oaks begin growing new leaves, Mountain Community Fire Safe Council Goldspotted oak borer inspection teams have another element to check on their inspection forms — canopy health. Comparative leafiness of an oak’s crown, thin and spotty compared to other oaks in the same area with more robust canopies, is one indicator of an ailing tree. FSC Teams have already inspected 212 oaks on 44 area properties.

Last week, Pat Boss and Don Patterson inspected two black oaks on Hemstreet Place. The older and larger of the two, showed sufficient markers, including thinning canopy and at least five D-shaped exit holes, that the team marked it for subsequent CAL FIRE inspection. The tree was old, around 200 years thought Patterson, already hollowing out on one side and showing signs of overall general weakness. The smaller tree, although adjacent, showed no obvious signs of Goldspotted oak borer infestation. Boss estimated the candidate tree is less than a mile from the oak across from the American Legion that was removed, and is arguably part of that same micro zone of infestation.

A cutter removes a limb from a Pine Cove GSOB tree on Friday, May 17. Photo by Marshall Smith

But Boss noted Goldspotted oak borer beetles are not known to fly long distances or move too far from a tree that is still productively hosting them. So how this tree became infected, whether from firewood brought in, or from nearby beetles is unknown.

What is known is that older, larger black oaks, already in a weakened state, are strong candidates for Goldspotted oak borer occupation. Local property owners with black oaks should check tree canopies, a more obvious indicia of tree decline, than others used by FSC inspection teams. If your tree canopy looks thin and is not fully filled out, contact the GSOB hotline to arrange an inspection.

Forest Service Entomologist and lead GSOB researcher Tom Coleman advises concerned property owners who want to learn about current science in combatting Goldspotted oak borer should consult “Pest Notes” at www.gsob.org. At a recent Idyllwild GSOB education session, the “take home” message on one of the featured slides was: “read the GSOB Pest Note; there is no silver bullet for managing GSOB; ground surveys can be very effective for detecting GSOB; current insecticide research has been effective in the lab (but not yet in the field); grinding or tarping firewood can eliminate GSOB populations (if the tarping is secure and won’t develop holes); leave wood on site for two years before moving it (two years is the length of time GSOB can survive in firewood) and bio-control research is ongoing.”

University of California Riverside’s Mark Hoddle, who works with Coleman on Goldspotted oak borer research, was asked about bio-control and whether there are current native California enemies effective against the beetle. Goldspotted oak borer predators found in Arizona (“parasitoids”) that attack the beetle’s eggs and larvae and seem to hold it in check are not effective in California, according to Hoddle, in stemming the advance of Goldspotted oak borer.

“Parasitism levels appear to be low in Arizona, based on the limited surveys we have done. This low level of attack is unlikely to be sufficient to effectively control GSOB in California,” Hoddle believes. “Native [California] oaks have not co-evolved with a wood boring beetle like GSOB [as oaks have in Arizona] and they [California oaks] might therefore be very sensitive to this kind of attack. So a combination of low levels of parasitoid and predator activity and host plant resistance [in Arizona] in combination may be what holds GSOB at low levels.”

Regarding if and when Goldspotted oak borer enemies from Arizona could be introduced into California, Hoddle said, “No natural enemies will be introduced from Arizona to California until we have run safety tests on bio-control agents that we think have the potential to be useful. These studies will take years to complete in quarantine if we start them.”

Tree removal is the most effective way to currently stop spread to additional trees. Some insecticide sprays have shown effectiveness in laboratory tests. And firewood from a diseased tree must be tarped and sealed in such a way that beetles cannot emerge for a two year period. During that time, firewood should not be moved.

For a GSOB inspection, call (951) 659-8328.

Goldspotted oak borer private land inspections begin


Ron Perry and Doris Lombard inspect a black oak in Pine Cove. Photo by Marshall Smith

Mountain Communities Fire Safe Council has begun dispatching teams of volunteers trained in spotting signs of Goldspotted oak borer infestation. Executive Director Edwina Scott said the teams received their survey sheets on Friday, April 5, and then began responding to inspection requests from private landowners.

Inspection teams formed primarily from FSC’s Woodies component received Goldspotted oak borer spotting training from key scientists involved with mapping the spread of the highly invasive oak predator. FSC presently has five inspection teams.

On Monday, April 8, a team composed of Doris Lombard and Ron Perry inspected a property in Pine Cove. The property owner had attended a
January Goldspotted oak borer information meeting held at Town Hall. There she had signed up to have her oak-studded property inspected. With flashlights, magnifying glasses, markers, paper clips (to measure depth of exit holes) and detailed survey sheets, Lombard and Perry inspected two oaks on the homeowner’s property. The inspection revealed possible infestation when the team discovered characteristic D-shaped exit holes on both trees.

Kevin Turner (at left), GSOB project coordinator, trains Woodies at Help Center on Friday, April 5. Photo by Doris Lombard
Perry and Lombard logged the property location, the GPS coordinates and detailed descriptions of the inspected oaks (species, tree breast height diameter and crown rating – fullness, apparent leaf health, or lack thereof of the tree canopy and exit holes. If bark is already missing, FSC teams can then look for frass, staining or larval galleries).

The morning of the inspection was very foggy, with heavy drizzle, making inspection difficult. Lombard and Perry plan to return to inspect additional oaks on this homeowner’s property.

The next step in the FSC protocol is for scientists to visit trees the FSC teams have identified as Goldspotted oak borer candidates. Then scientists, during subsequent visits, would determine whether the trees are infested with the beetle. Part of that process may involve chipping bark to see if there is evidence of characteristic staining and whether larvae are present. DNA laboratory confirmation may also be required for a positive identification.

If scientists determine the suspect trees are infested with Goldspotted oak borer, Pine Cove would be added to the expanding list of “micro-zones” in which the insect has already been positively confirmed. Those zones presently include Highway 243 from Mountain Top Liquor to La Bella Montagna Italian Restaurant, the area around Town Hall, and around the American Legion Post on Marian View Drive.

Once a positive Goldspotted oak borer identification is made, homeowners can have the tree removed at no cost through one of two means — by Southern California Edison if the oak is near its power lines, or through federal grants which pay 100 percent for removal of infested oaks. Removing an infested tree is presently the surest way to prevent further Goldspotted oak borer spread.

Landowners can schedule an inspection by calling the GSOB hotline (951) 659-8328. Information that would help a landowner make a preliminary inspection and assessment can be found on www.gsob.org.

Emergency group hears Goldspotted oak borer update


After chipping bark on the downed oak, GSOB Program Director Kevin Turner, holds live larvae in his hand. Tom Scott said there were more than 500 live larvae in the tree. Photo by Marshall Smith

CAL FIRE Unit Forester Chief Gregg Bratcher delivered some good news — federal grant extensions — and some bad news — more Goldspotted oak borer infested oak trees — to the Mountain Emergency Services Committee on Thursday, March 14.

The good news is that a current CAL FIRE tree removal grant, which was originally authorized during the bark beetle crisis in the early part of the last decade, will pay 100 percent of the cost to private landowners for removal of Goldspotted oak borer infected black oaks. Hill landowners will not be required to pay 25 to 30 percent of tree removal costs, a cost sharing that was standard for the bark beetle Forest Care program.

“This will not be a cost share,” Bratcher said. “We already have a contractor set up.” The cost to remove a large oak, depending on proximity to a structure, could easily exceed $2,000, according to Bratcher, who believes landowners will welcome the news of eliminating any cost sharing.

The bad news, said Bratcher, is that two more infested trees have been discovered, raising the current known total to nine. The two recently identified infested oaks are on Marion View Drive across from the American Legion. This is the same location of a very large GSOB-infected oak that Southern California Edison crews removed on Thursday, March 14.

Edison crew member cuts a section of the tree for Tom Scott and other scientists to use for study. Photo by Marshall Smith

UCR Natural Resource Specialist Tom Scott, one of the lead GSOB scientists, estimated this oak had more than 500 live larvae. “It was heavily infested,” Scott said. Scott advised any landowner with oaks near the American Legion to start monitoring their trees carefully, inasmuch as wider oak infestation in that area is likely, given the high numbers of live larvae in the recently removed oak.

“Right now, there are three ‘micro areas’ of GSOB infestation that have been identified in Idyllwild,” Bratcher said — Highway 243 from Mountaintop Liquor to the Bella Montagna Italian Restaurant, the area around Town Hall and the Marion View Drive area. Bratcher advised that when oaks began to leaf out in the spring, further oak borer infestation may be visible — from leaf die off, abnormalities in the leaves themselves and an unusual number of woodpeckers foraging in the trees for beetle larvae.

“Aerial photographs have identified about 6,000 Hill black oaks of the size that Goldspotted oak borer could attack in the wider Idyllwild area,” Scott said. A team of trained local oak borer spotting volunteers, comprised mainly of the Mountain Communities Fire Safe Council Woodies, will begin deploying for site visits in the three identified areas. They will then contact landowners if their oaks exhibit signs of infestation.

Bratcher advised landowners, “If you have questions, call the GSOB hotline.” That number is (951) 659-8328. He said that scientists, looking at sections of the infested local trees, believe Goldspotted oak borer has probably been in Idyllwild for two or three seasons. “It was brought in by firewood,” he said. “That is a 98 percent certainty.”

Goldspotted oak borer town meeting Jan. 19


A public meeting about the arrival of the highly destructive Goldspotted oak borer takes place from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 19, at Town Hall.

The purpose of the meeting is to inform residents, land and homeowners, about the potential for damage to Hill oaks and property this beetle could cause. It has already killed 90,000 oaks in San Diego County and caused millions of dollars in damage.

Presenters at the meeting are key scientists, professional responders and policy makers. At present there is no spray or treatment that can arrest the advance of this pest once it arrives in an area. Scientists believe it was transported to Idyllwild in firewood from infested parts of San Diego County. Because there is no current treatment or natural predator for the beetle, meeting organizers will appeal to residents for help in identifying infested trees. Once infested, trees should be removed so that further area contamination does not occur.

And since the availability of professional responders and scientists to identify infected trees is limited, citizen observers and reporters are vitally important.

This meeting is important for any who own property that hosts oak trees. At this point, education of the public about transporting firewood and identifying beetle-infested trees is the only weapon in the arsenal to tamp further the oak borer’s spread.Were the beetle to reach urban residential areas with large stands of ornamental oak such as Pasadena, costs of tree removal and decimation of property values could reach into the billions of dollars. Unchecked, the Goldspotted oak borer has the potential to move up the Pacific Coast to Oregon and Washington.

Check your post office mailboxes for mailers about the meeting.

Goldspotted oak borer town hall meeting on Jan. 19


Editor’s note: The reporter in this article had $49,000 of tree-removal costs during the 2003 bark beetle infestation. Fortunately, Southern California Edison paid for all but $10,000 of the removal costs, since the very large pines threatened power lines. The Goldspotted oak borer, recently identified in Idyllwild, could cause similar if not greater tree loss and property damage for Hill homeowners.

A meeting important to Hill land and homeowners, one that could impact their land and home values, takes place from 2 to 4 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 19, at the Idyllwild Town Hall.

Forest Service scientists and CAL FIRE incident leaders in this investigation will discuss the recent discovery of one Idyllwild tree evidencing infestation by the Goldspotted oak borer, and what options are available to the community at this point.

Speakers include Gregg Bratcher, CAL FIRE Forest Battalion Chief, Tom Coleman, U.S. Forest Service entomologist and lead Gold spotted oak borer scientist, Tom Scott, UCR conservation biologist, Kevin Turner, UCR Goldspotted Oak Borer Program Coordinator and Edwina Scott, Mountain Communities Fire Safe Council executive director.

It is important for part-time homeowners from San Diego County to attend since that county is the present site of the greatest tree loss caused by this invasive beetle. Firewood imported from San Diego County is the likely cause of the Idyllwild infestation. Scientists involved with the investigation of the Idyllwild incident identified firewood brought from San Diego County as having evidence of oak borer infestation.

In San Diego County alone, this insect has already killed 90,000 oaks. Once it is ensconced in an area, there are no current treatment options available to stop its further spread.

To prepare for the meeting, there is web site information to use as a primer. That information is found at www.gsob.org, and includes how to identify infested trees, how citizens can report that infestation as well as diagnostic questions that will help scientists better understand how long the infestation has been in a particular area and where it may have come from. Also included is a section on “Best Management Practices” for preventing the spread of Goldspotted oak borer through the movement of logs and firewood.

In a section called “Early Warning System,” University of California scientists are asking woodland owners to help monitor the condition of their oaks and immediately report signs of declining health, leaf loss in tree crowns and other signs of impending oak mortality.

Experts explain oak borer concerns and local action
What: The presence of the Goldspotted oak borer in Idyllwild: An opportunity to learn what we can do the stop the spread of this invasive property damaging pest.

When: Saturday, Jan. 19, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Idyllwild Town Hall, 25925 Cedar Street

Speakers will include:

  • Gregg Bratcher, CAL FIRE Forest Battalion Chief
  • Tom Coleman, entomologist, U.S. Forest Service
  • Edwina Scott, Mountain Communities Fire Safe Council
  • Tom Scott, a conservation biologist at the University of California, Riverside
  • Kevin Turner, Goldspotted Oak Borer Program Coordinator, UC Cooperative Extension