U.S. Forest Service Scientists’ Work Featured in Netflix Documentary

By Hilary Clark
US Department of Agriculture
June 3, 2024
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

A rusty brown bark beetle, the length of a grain of rice, lands on a ponderosa pine. Tiny insect legs make a clicking sound, as the beetle scales the tree. The miniature assassin readies itself to bore into the pine, often the tree’s death knell. This scene is from Episode 3 Breaking Point of the Netflix documentary Our Living World, which explores how climate change is upending the natural world. U.S. Forest Service scientists Chris Fettig, Danny Cluck and Leif Mortenson served among the film’s scientific consultants on bark beetles taking the camera crew into the forest for filming. “Even though the bark beetle scene only lasts four minutes, it took days of filming,” Fettig stated. …The executive producer first approached Fettig about assisting with the documentary in 2019, to which he gave a resounding ‘yes!’ “I thought it was a great opportunity to amplify our work to a public audience,” Fettig stated.

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