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Extreme weather causes huge damage of trees in Britain: research

English.news.cn   2014-03-07 21:17:52

LONDON, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Extreme weather in last winter has caused huge damage of trees in Britain, while the country is also facing the biggest tree losses in the past 20 years, new research released on Friday showed.

High winds and extreme weather throughout the winter have seen some places lose hundreds of trees, including many valued ancient trees, according to the research of National Trust.

Surveyed with gardeners, rangers and fosters across the country, the research said the losses of trees have been the greatest in more than two decades.

The organization, which cares for 25,000 hectares (61,776 acres) of woodland across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, said many of the lost trees were blown over rather than snapped off due to the saturated ground conditions.

The research showed the Killerton Estate in Devon has suffered some of the biggest losses, with more than 500 trees blown over by the storms, including 20 significant trees within the designed landscape.

A few historically or regionally important trees have also been lost, such as a rare black walnut at Hatfield Forest, which was the largest in Essex.

"People love and need trees, and the loss of specimen trees in gardens and parks, and of ancient beeches and oaks in the woods and wider countryside hurts us all, and damages much wildlife," said Matthew Oates, National Trust Specialist on Nature & Wildlife.

"We value and venerate these old sentinels and need to become increasingly aware of the power of the weather," he said.

"Increased extreme weather events generally are likely to stress trees further, especially veteran trees," he said, "We will have to think carefully about where we establish trees and what species we plant."

Editor: Mengjie
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