Changes at American Forests

Take a Hike! The Best Hiking Trails in the United States

Meet Maine’s Big Tree Guru

Wasps vs. Beetles: Battle Wages to Save Forests

FOREST FILES: Global ReLeaf in Honduras

Ch-ch-Changes at American Forests!

2011 is a year of changes at American Forests: a new CEO, a revitalized mission, a new website, a new logo and more to come! As you’ve probably noticed, we’ve brought some of these changes to Forestbytes with a new layout and new content areas. From now on, we’ll be featuring more American Forests projects and programs, as well relevant environmental stories and breakthroughs. With all of these changes, it remains important to us that you’re continuing to get the type of information and updates you want from this newsletter. Send feedback on what you like, what you don’t and what you’d like to see more of to Michelle at

Head over to the homepage to meet CEO Scott Steen on TreeTV, calculate your carbon footprint, explore our Global ReLeaf projects, search our Big Tree database and more.

Take a Hike! The Best Hiking Trails in the US

Barnes Creek Trail

Credit: Larry Eifert

Ever wonder where the best places to hike in the US are? Wonder no more, as we’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite hiking trails in places like California’s Joshua Tree National Park, Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Montana’s Glacier National Park, Colorado’s White River National Forest, Georgia’s Black Rock Mountain State Park and Vermont’s Green Mountain National Forest. Plus, some of our blogger friends — Erika Henderson aka TheActiveExplorer, Jeff Doran of HikingintheSmokys, and Larry Eifert — share their picks for best hikes.

Check out the complete list and details on the trails and their locations.


Meet Maine’s Big Tree Guru

Jan Ames Santerre and Debra Hopkins

Jan Ames Santerre (left) and Debra Hopkins. Courtesy: Jan Ames Santerre

Jan Ames Santerre (far left with Yarmouth Tree Warden Debra Hopkins) enjoys long-distance running and spending time with her two toddler boys, especially if it involves being outdoors. She also enjoys being the state coordinator of Maine’s Big Tree Program, a position she has held for the last 11 years. The state’s Big Tree program began in 1958 and boasts three national champions.

Learn more about Jan and Maine’s Big Trees.




Wasps vs. Beetles: Battle Wages to Save Forests

Emerald Ash Borer

Credit: Susan Greenhouse, California Department of Fish and Game

In the forests of Wisconsin, a quiet but fierce battle to save the state’s ash tree population has begun. In response to the infestation of invasive emerald ash borers, entomologists from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UWM) have released hundreds of parasitic wasps to help rid the area’s forests of the destructive beetles, but the team isn’t certain what the long-term effects of releasing another invasive species into the wild will be.

Discover how and why the UWM scientists developed this plan.



FOREST FILES: Global ReLeaf in Honduras

Forest FilesWho: Global Releaf with Sustainable Harvest International (SHI), a fellow nonprofit

Where: rural Honduras

What: The planting of nearly 140,000 trees that will repair and improve the land and serve as a much-needed food resource for more than 1,100 families

Tree Tidbits: Eighty-five percent of the trees being planted will provide watershed protection, shade for crops, fodder for domesticated animals, and habitat for the area’s native wildlife. The other 15 percent are fruit trees, which will provide food for the communities’ families.

Uncover more about this American Forests Global ReLeaf project.