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An Aerial Observer's Guide to Recognizing and Reporting Southern Pine Beetle Spots
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Checklist for Summer
Aerial Surveys


For detecting and reporting SPB spots from May through October, follow these guidelines:

  • Decide if the observed trees show symptoms of recent SPB attack. Look for a group of dead and dying pines with at least some yellow crowns.
  • For suspected SPB spots, determine if the number of yellow- and red-crowned trees exceeds the minimum reportable size.
  • Plot the locations of all reportable spots as accurately as possible on a map or photo. Use landmarks such as clearings, road intersections, pipelines, and lakes.
  • Estimate and record either the total number of affected trees (bare + red + yellow) or the number of recently infested trees (red + yellow).
  • Assign a ground check priority to the spot, based on a priority table (table 1). Record this information on the map or photo.
  • Report all information promptly to ground check crews.
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