Re After fire, leave the forest alone to heal habitat (Forum, Another View, Jan. 19): I have some questions and concerns regarding Justin Augustine's opinion piece. 1. Do we really want a standing forest of diseased trees, and do we want to establish a food source for bark beetles, encouraging them to move in? Most western lodgepole pine forests have been devastated by beetles. 2. Doesn't it defy common sense and experience to believe that wildlife wont thrive in logged-over and regenerating forests? 3. Do we really want to waste timber that has salvage value and could put people to work? 4. Do we really want to prevent a new, replanted forest? Justin Augustine's ecological article seems to be just another attempt to stop logging. Thirty years ago, groups like his were saying that spotted owls could only survive in old growth forests.
-- James Peace, Sacramento