Trees deliberately poisoned

Four trees on the Lake Te Anau lakefront were deliberately poisoned because they blocked the views of the lake, the Fiordland Community Board chairwoman says.

The four silver birch trees in Te Anau Tce were drilled out and poisoned with weed killer, the Southland District Council said.

Council contracts and project lead Lance Spencer said news of the poisoning was passed on by Fiordland Community Board chairwoman Diane Holmes.

Mrs Holmes said a resident had contacted her about the trees and she had inspected them.

She said all the trees were now dead, although one still had one green branch.

The council had not received any complaints about the trees before the poisoning.

The trees would be removed for safety reasons as soon as possible and no decision would be made about replanting until the township development plan was completed.

Mrs Holmes said the board was looking to create a Te Anau basin development plan and had quite a few discussions with residents.

"But someone has obviously decided before the development discussion is over, they do not want the trees blocking the views and have done this," she said.

All the houses opposite the trees were holiday houses, she said.

It was frustrating it had happened and the trees would be missed.

She did not know how long ago they were poisoned.

Police had been notified.