As anglers, we often travel through or past wooded areas to get to a riverbank or loch, and the Forestry Commission Scotland has requested that everyone looks out for ash tree Chalara dieback, following an outbreak that has doomed some 58,000 young trees recently planted on farmland near Kilmalcolm, Renfrewshire.
Forestry Commission Scotland has urged woodland managers throughout Scotland to be vigilant for signs of Chalara dieback, caused by the fungus Chalara fraxinea, that has already affected ash trees elsewhere in Europe, in particular more than halving Denmark’s population of the species.
In Scotland, the disease was discovered in young ash trees – just planted in 2009 – in a woodland managed by Forest Enterprise Scotland, just north of Kilmacolm.
“Following laboratory confirmation of the disease at Knockmountain, all the young ash trees planted there will now need to be destroyed,” said FCS’s tree health adviser Hugh Clayden, who warned that the disease, which has recently been recorded at three locations in England, has the potential to kill millions of ash trees if it spreads into the natural environment.
If you do spot anything suspicious, please report it to the local Estate manager who can then have the trees inspected.