In another unmistakable sign that nature is not always kind and gentle, millions of pine trees across the Rocky Mountains are falling prey to a rice-sized flying beetle that is turning once lush green mountain sides into slopes of ghostly gray. According to the Los Angeles Times, an unprecedented infestation of pine beetles has put the great forests of Mountain states like Colorado, Utah and Wyoming under siege, and tens of millions of mature pines will likely die. Ironically, decades of logging restrictions and fire suppression have left many slopes densely packed with tall old pines which are the beetles favorite habitat, and these policies have inadvertently added to this major environmental threat.

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