Officials say cold weather won't stop pine beetles - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Officials say cold weather won't stop pine beetles

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - The bitter cold snap across South Dakota has canceled events and increased calls for furnace repairs, but hopes that it might chase away the state's most unwelcome visitors are futile at best.

Forestry officials say the mountain pine beetles that have ravaged the Black Hills in recent years can withstand the arctic temperatures, which have approached 20 below zero in some areas.

South Dakota State University forestry specialist John Ball tells the Black Hills Pioneer that pine beetles gradually acclimate to colder temperatures. He says a similar cold wave in October would have been a bug killer.

The deep freeze has been a boon for the furnace repair business. One heating and cooling business in Sioux Falls received 100 calls on Friday for people needing furnace tune-ups.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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