Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Buzz in the Woods

My beloved forest is going through some trauma today.

The woods are alive with the whine of chain saws and wood-choppers as the city cuts down 150 ash trees in a struggle to vanquish the emerald ash borer.

Trees ravaged by the borer, marked for destruction.
The ash borer is beautiful to look at, but what it does is dreadful.

Emerald ash borer, via Wikipedia
This invasive bug makes its home just beneath the bark of ash trees -- and, possibly, to other species of tree. It so happens that the "living" part of the tree is its outermost layer. The ash borer deposits its eggs in this layer and the larvae proceed to feast as they develop.

Picture taken April 13, 2014.
This is what the destruction looks like in a badly infested tree.

I realize that the trees have to go, but it still leaves me feeling sad. I can't help but look at them and think of all the years that went into their growth. I've also seen signs posted on ash trees saying that the tree has been "treated for ash borer," and I can't help but wonder why we aren't treating the trees instead of waiting until they are sick and then killing them.


  1. Oh this is so sad!! I hope they will at least plant some kind of new tree in their places.

    1. I do hope they will, too. Right now, it looks so sad, but I expect it will be better in the spring when the undergrowth hides much of the destruction.


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