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Aspen angst.

There's even a famous town named after them. But unfortunately, aspen forests in Colorado and throughout the West are disappearing at an alarming rate, dying faster and in more places than previously expected. And U.S. Forest Service ecologists are a bit baffled as to why. Recent investigations have shown that their roots are dying and since sprouts are formed on the roots, it's bad news for the trees. Research stations around the West report that the trees are dying in all kinds of settings, elevations and environments. "The Colorado blue spruce might be the official state tree," says aspen researcher Wayne Shepperd, "but aspen pays the rent." The aspen trees' fall foliage creates a tourist draw after summer fun has wound down and before skiing begins. They also provide valuable food for certain birds and animals.
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Publication:State Legislatures
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1U8CO
Date:Oct 1, 2006
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