June 20th, 2014 by

Happy Friday! We are pleased to share another edition of Forest Digest with you to ring in the weekend.

Here is this week’s news in trees:

“2 Billion New Trees To Be Planted In India, Official Says”HuffPost Green
A plan that fights unemployment and protects forests? Snaps for India! Last week, the country’s Rural Development Ministry introduced a proposal that would employ several hundred thousand young men and women to plant two billion trees along the country’s highways.

Freshwater fish like the salmon rely on tree biomass that falls into the water for sustenance. Photo: PNNL/Flickr

Freshwater fish rely on tree biomass that falls into the water for sustenance.
Photo: PNNL/Flickr

“Researchers Peek into the Mysterious World of Roots”National Association of State Foresters
Scientists in the western United States plan to study tree roots in Northwestern forests to get down to— well— their roots! A great deal of understanding about this underground item remains buried. One question researchers hope to answer regards the role of fungal hyphae, a thin thread that connects the roots of different trees.

Crews make progress battling wildfire in Sequoia National Forest”Los Angeles Times
The Shirley fire, a wildfire that is spreading quickly through California’s Kern County,  made its way to Sequoia National Forest over the weekend. On Monday, officials announced that half of the wildfire in Sequoia National Forest has been contained. Shirley this is due to the valiant efforts of firefighters, who have been combating the blaze both on the ground and in the air.

“Deforestation = Starving fish”Treehugger
Here’s some food for thought: a new study from the University of Cambridge’s Department of Plant Sciences indicates that there is a direct link between forest protection and healthy fish populations. Freshwater fish consume leaves and other types of biomass that fall from trees into the water. What this means is that deforestation threatens the livelihoods of the fish who rely on trees for food.

Learn about American Forests’ efforts to save these aquatic populations in our National Rivers Month series.

“Breeding Trees Better Adapted for Warmer Climates”Nature World News
A recent discovery from the University of Oregon reveals that the EBB1 gene— AKA the bud-break gene— controls trees’ awakening from winter hibernation. This finding could have a tree-mendous impact on adapting to climate change.

“Tree hugging helps koalas keep their cool”Science Daily
Thermal imaging research shows that to beat the heat, koala bears cling to trees whose temperatures are cooler than that of the air. The availability of trees can protect these adorable tree-huggers; a 2009 heatwave killed one fourth of New South Wales’ koala population.