The one thousandth tree has been registered on the TreeWatch website, reflecting increasing interest in our citizen science initiative.
It comes the same month as the devastating new disease on ash, Chalara fraxinea or ash dieback, finally attracted the national media attention it deserved, and the same year that sweet chestnut blight and the Asian longhorn beetle were reported in the UK. These diseases and pests are added to a growing number of existing health issues affecting our trees including acute oak decline in oak, Phytopthora ramorum in larch, the oak processionary moth and more besides.
The age of the citizen scientist is certainly of the moment, as a growing army of volunteers capable of sighting and reporting tree health issues, can be a very powerful weapon in our defense of trees especially when working alongside tree professionals and scientists. This is the role of the TreeWatch initiative. As our slogan for TreeWatch reads … people power for healthy trees!