Root out culprits

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Tree conservationists have been quick to claim that the spores of chalara fraxinea, which is the fungus causing ash dieback, could have blown over from mainland Europe.

However, what about all the seeds and ­saplings imported and then planted by these organisations which passed them off as “native” trees?

While there are plenty of vague references to planted woodlands where dieback is occurring, it should be incumbent on the authorities to ­divulge who owns these woodlands so that a pattern could be ­established indicating which ­organisations might be ­responsible for planting ­diseased foreign trees in 
the UK.

Far from being compensated with taxpayers’ money for their losses, these conservationists and their nursery growers, who threaten to sue the government, should perhaps be held to account for continuing to import trees from Europe when they were well aware of the ­possibility of diseased stock.

Angus Macmillan

Near Balloch