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Department Updates Chalara Survey Findings

Following confirmation of a finding of Ash Dieback (Chalara fraxinea) in Ireland in October 2012 (on plants imported from continental Europe), an ongoing major survey of ash has been carried out by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.  This included targeted and systematic ash surveys of plantations, nurseries, roadsides, landscape and farm landscape plantings and hedgerows. To date there have been a total of 101 confirmed finding’s of the disease located throughout the country.

Current update table on Chalara:

 

Location type

Number of Confirmed  findings

Forestry Plantations

40

Horticultural Nurseries

17

Garden Centres

4

Private Garden

3

Farm landscaping/Agri-envir schemes

15

Roadside landscaping

20

Hedgerow *

2

Total

101

*One hedgerow ash positive site (Leitrim) within and near former infected ash plantation and one ash hedgerow (Tipperary) near infected farm landscaping shelterbelt

As part of the surveillance effort a systematic survey of Ireland’s hedgerows as well as a targeted survey of hedgerows surrounding infected plantations was carried out.  Following confirmation of the first hedgerow infection earlier this month in County Leitrim the Department today confirmed a second infected ash hedgerow site in County Tipperary.  This hedgerow is within 50 metres of a farm landscaping shelterbelt of ash planted 8 years ago with imported plants that have also tested positive for the disease.  This is now the second confirmed site of Chalara in a native hedgerow in Ireland. The Department are carrying out a survey of the hedgerow system in the vicinity of this finding before determining the extent of hedgerow to be removed in order to eradicate the disease at this site. In the meantime the farm landscaping shelterbelt is being removed.

Speaking today Minister Hayes said Given this finding of a second outbreak in native ash trees within a hedgerow, it is obvious that there is a major challenge in eradicating this disease.   We will continue with the policy of eradication and review this policy as further results come in from the ongoing surveys.”

Meanwhile the felling of trees in the first hedgerow infection site in Leitrim site has been completed.  Minister Hayes visited the site to view firsthand the work being carried out.  Minister Hayes met some of the landowners at the site and thanked them for their co-operation in trying to rid Ireland of this disease.

Date Released: 29 October 2013