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Dublin: 18°C Saturday 31 July 2021

Second outbreak of ash dieback found in hedgerow

The infected site is in Co Tipperary. To date, there have been 101 confirmed findings of the disease.

File: A piece of ash infected with dieback in the UK.
File: A piece of ash infected with dieback in the UK.
Image: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

A SECOND CASE of ash dieback in a hedgerow has been confirmed today – a year after the first case of the disease was confirmed in Ireland.

The dieback found last year was on plants that were imported from continental Europe. After its discovery, a major survey of ash was carried out by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine on plantations, nurseries, roadsides, landscape and farm landscape plantations and hedgerows.

To date, there have been 101 confirmed findings of dieback.

Earlier this month, a case of dieback was confirmed in a hedgerow in Co Leitrim. Today, a second case has been confirmed in an ash hedgerow site in Co Tipperary.

The department said that this hedgerow is “within 50 metres of a farm landscaping shelterbelt of ash planted eight years ago with imported plants that have also tested positive for the disease”.

The department is carrying out a survey of the hedgerow system near this finding before determining the extent of hedgerow to be removed in order to get rid of the disease there.

In the meantime, the farm landscaping shelterbelt is being removed.

Minister Brian Hayes said today:

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.

The felling of trees in the first hedgerow site in Leitrim infected by dieback has been completed.

The locations that saw the greatest number of confirmed findings of dieback were forestry plantations (40), followed by roadside landscaping (20), horticultural nurseries (17), farm landscaping/agricultural-environmental schemes (15), garden centres (four), private gardens (three) and two hedgerows.

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