Ash dieback – where are we now?

Here in Britain, ash trees (Fraxinus excelsior) are under attack by a fungus (Chalara fraxinea) which causes the disease called ash dieback. This is one of several emerging diseases now threatening our trees.

The ash dieback story has gone quiet in the news, probably because it’s winter here now and all the deciduous trees are leafless. Including ash trees. But ash dieback hasn’t gone away. When spring comes, there’ll be ash trees whose leaves don’t grow back, or which grow back then droop with ash dieback.

Here’s what the Centre for Agricultural Bioscience International (CABI) says about the ash dieback story so far. You might choose to look at Fraxback. I’m glad to see that the disease is being monitored, and that research is continuing. But this story isn’t finished. The Fat Lady’s not singing yet.


About argylesock

I wrote a PhD about veterinary parasitology so that's the starting point for this blog. But I'm now branching out into other areas of biology and into popular science writing. I'll write here about science that happens in landscapes, particularly farmland, and about science involving interspecific interactions. Datasets and statistics get my attention. Exactly where this blog will lead? That's a journey that I'm on and I hope you'll come with me.
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4 Responses to Ash dieback – where are we now?

  1. Our local state park here in Michigan, USA, was devastated by an ash dieback caused by a beetle that hopped a ride from Asia on shipping pallets.

  2. Tony says:

    I sincerely hope that Sudden Oak death doesn’t also become as prolific as Ash dieback. Especially when you consider the sheer numbers of invertebrates, that are said to inhabit your average Oak tree. I have heard estimates of 800 different species living on them. Should the disease envelop the wider countryside, we would be facing a catastrophe, given the role that the humble Oak plays in our ecosystem.

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