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The Whitebark Pine

The Whitebark Pine

The Elder of the Greater Yellowstone Eco-System

Stio’s logo is an artist’s rendering of the majestic Whitebark pinecone. We chose this symbol because it represents strength, solidarity, beauty and adaptability. Fortunately, a significant percentage of the Whitebark Pine’s population is right in our back yard. We see them every day – during morning commutes, family walks, and on ski tours in Teton Park. They’re the elder statesmen of the area - tall and often twisted, strong, but a bit bent from hundreds of years (they’ll live a millennium!) of persistent high-altitude winds.

The Whitebark Pine is one of nature’s greatest multitaskers:

The Whitebark is an important wildlife food source.

Grizzly and black bears, red squirrels, the Clark’s nutcracker and many others feed on their hefty and nutritious seeds.

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The Whitebark plays an important ecological role.

As a high-alpine conifer, the trees play a leading role in natural runoff management. Their canopied branches delay snowmelt in the spring, providing consistent moisture throughout the season.

The Whitebark may not last.

The tree is threatened because of climate change, and as a fundamental cog of biodiversity in the area, its decline will have a cascading, negative impact on the greater ecosystem. The combination of blister rust (a fungus) and pine beetle infestation is wiping them out. Fire suppression has also played a part, as the good occasional blaze goes a long way towards eradicated beetles and fungus.

At Stio, we’re doing our small part by contributing 20% of Stio Whitebark Tee shirt sales to the protection of the Whitebark Pine. Our donations will go towards restoration efforts like harvesting cones from trees resistant to rust, prescribed burns and treating trees with verbenone and other organic insecticides. Check out the Stio Whitebark T's here.

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