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Local Trees Dropping Like Flies Due to Sudden Oak Death

Photo by denisetaylor☼ via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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Not that the University of California wants to scare the crap out of us or anything but they'd like us to know this: "Foreign pests are eating their way through our national forests, destroying majestic scenery and costing taxpayers millions of dollars."

Before you grab your rifle and head to the US-Mexico border, know that these "foreign pests" are insects, of which there are 455--and 16 pathogens--chewing through forests across the nation. Here in California, our enemy is the pathogen called "sudden oak death," which is destroying our historic trees.

The UC is recommending "better screening before letting items into the country," in order to keep these pests out of our land. Locally, our love of our state's historic trees is so profound that the powers that be in Arcadia have opted to plow 179 oak trees and 70 sycamores in an 11-acre canyon to make room for 500,000 cubic yards of silt and other gunk from the Santa Anita Reservoir. Hmmm, will that new repository be vulnerable to "sudden silt death"?