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For Release: Wednesday, February 7, 2018

DEC Announces Hazardous Tree Removal for Sanford Lake Recreation Area

Extensive Damage to Local Ash Trees Due to EAB Infestation

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today that the agency is conducting a project to remove dead and unsafe trees from the Sanford Lake Recreation Area in Steuben County. Dead trees and those trees showing evidence of sufficient rot to be a danger to the public are slated for removal.

DEC's recent tree survey at Sanford Lake Recreation Area found extensive damage to trees from the invasive pest, emerald ash borer (EAB) Although DEC removes hazardous trees annually at this time, the number of trees to be removed this year is larger, primarily due to EAB. This invasive pest has killed most of the ash trees in the Mud Creek Valley, where Sanford Lake is located.

General forest stands in the immediate area in Steuben County appear to have 40 - 60 percent mortality. Areas such as Sanford Lake, where the ash tree population was higher, have higher tree mortality rates.

DEC re-planting projects are planned to begin in 2019. Tree planting is a long-term project, and it will take time for the planted trees to reach the same size as the trees being removed. The trees to be planted are expected to come from the DEC nursery in Saratoga Springs, NY. No ash trees will be used in the re-planting.

DEC tree removal work will be conducted Monday through Thursday and will continue through early April. Recreational areas and trails will remain open, with short term (three to four hours or less) "rolling," localized closures during take-downs of particularly hazardous trees.

The public is reminded that recreational use of the campsites in this area requires a camping permit that must be obtained, in advance, from the DEC office located at 7291 Coon Road, Bath, NY 14810

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