Poisoned poplar trees to be removed

Dead poplar trees near the shoreline of Lake Wanaka will be felled next week. PHOTO: REGAN HARRIS
Dead poplar trees near the shoreline of Lake Wanaka will be felled next week. PHOTO: REGAN HARRIS
More than 40 dead lakeside poplar trees near Wānaka, poisoned two years ago, will be removed next week to keep people safe.

Several of the 43 trees at Beacon Point are in a state of collapse.

The Queenstown Lakes District Council said on social media this week that because the trees were becoming a health and safety issue for users of the nearby walking and cycle path, they would be removed over four consecutive days next week — starting Monday.

An arborist in 2022 found drill holes in one of the trees and concluded several had been poisoned.

An inspection in February this year led to the decision to fell them.

There would be a temporary closure at the end of Beacon Point Rd, the council’s post said.

The deaths of the trees was an act of vandalism that was "beyond disappointing".

The person who poisoned the trees was yet to be identified.

An investigation into the poisoning was effectively closed in March 2022, but the council welcomed those with any additional information to come forward, a spokesman said.

"Sadly, it’s often hard to identify individuals who’ve poisoned trees unless they come forward or we have video evidence.

"Anyone noticing suspicious activity is encouraged to report it to council customer services so it can be properly investigated."

regan.harris@odt.co.nz

 

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