Ash disease in Berwickshire

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A WOOD near Eyemouth has the deadly ash dieback disease.

The area is one of five new sites discovered following Forestry Commission Scotland’s (FCS) unprecedented five-day survey of the country’s ash trees which finished on Tuesday.

Five percent of the 2,730 ash sites surveyed showed potential symptoms of the chalara disease and will be revisited said an FCS spokesman.

Environment Minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “The results are to be cautiously welcomed (but) we still need to be vigilant. Action is underway to trace the destination of plants sent out from potentially infected nurseries. Further surveys will be needed before we can be confident about the full extent of the disease in Scotland. There is also the possibility of windborne spread of the disease from the continent and from infected sites elsewhere in these isles.”

The minister will host a meeting with key stakeholders in Scotland to discuss chalara and the findings of the survey early next week.