Photo of Craig Echt

Craig Echt

Research Geneticist
23332 Success Road
Saucier, MS 39547
Phone: 228-832-2747 x210

Current Research

Developing next-gen microsatellite (SSR) markers and DNA fingerprint sets for southern pines by using the loblolly pine genome sequence (PineRefSeq).

Studying spatial genetic populations structures and conservation genetics of longleaf pine, Table Mountain pine, and pondberry.

Developing strategies for germplasm restoration and conservation seed orchard establishment for threatened tree species in southern National Forests.

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Why This Research is Important

Some important tree species in the southern United States are in decline because of changing climates, changing land use patterns, or general lack of proper stewardship resulting from shifting budget priorities. Restoration and conservation of these species and their associated ecosystems is necessary to regain the important functions and services they provide society and growing urban populations. An ultimate and lasting success for restoration and conservation programs can only be realized if proper attention is given to maintaining or increasing that kind of genetic diversity that will provide adaptive diversity in rapidly changing environments. This is why it is now important to develop the proper genetic tools that allow researchers and land managers to efficiently study, evaluate, and monitor the genetic status of target tree species.


Ph.D. in Genetics, 1982
Indiana University
B.A., 1978
Hiram College

Professional Experience

Project Leader, The New Zealand Forest Research Institute

I led the Applications of Genomic Sciences project to develop and map SSR markers in radiata pine and to conduct QTL and associations genetics studies of wood quality traits in radiata pine.

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R&D Affiliations
Research Topics
Experimental Forests and Ranges
External Resources