[LMB] OT: California drop bear - an invasive species?

quietann quietann at gmail.com
Mon Aug 12 21:16:22 BST 2019

On Mon, Aug 12, 2019 at 7:25 AM Sharon Micenko <wembleyware at gmail.com>

> > On 12 Aug 2019, at 7:22 pm, Gwynne Powell <gwynnepowell at hotmail.com>
> wrote:
> >
> > From: "Parish, James" <jparish at siue.edu>
> >
> > But the most fun is the branches. Some gum trees will drop branches. Any
> time.
> > They don't do something obvious like waiting for a storm, oh no, they
> just stand
> > there and.... THUMP. Another one down. (On a sad and serious note, every
> year
> > a camper or two will be camped under a handy tree and killed by a
> falling branch
> > in the middle of a clear, quiet night.)
> >
> > See, our trees have attitude.
> >
> They’re not called widow-makers for no reason.
> And you thought it was only the animals in Australia that will kill you.

In New England, anyway, a widow maker is an obviously problematic branch --
like one that has broken off and gotten caught on something, but could fall
at any time.

I suppose one way to think about this would be to say that every branch on
a eucalyptus tree is a widow maker.

I grew up in San Diego, which has a huge number of eucalyptus trees.
Australian native plants tend to do well there. The very large, old ones
had a tendency to just fall over at random. I remember at least one
fatality (someone driving a car, the tree fell over and crushed the car.)
Eventually the city just started preemptively removing the really old ones.

Some fool in the late 19th century thought they'd make good railroad ties,
and planted huge groves of them all over San Diego. Hint: they don't make
good railroad ties, because the wood warps. And they don't make good
firewood, because they tend to burn really hot (and well, there's another
cause of wildfires in the area...)

And yes, I remember eucalyptus trees as being very annoying.

quietann at gmail.com

aka "The Accidental Jewess"

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