Saturday, February 21, 2009

Oak wilt and Oak decline

I drove down to the river the other day to get some big rocks for a walkway we were building. I was on the Burkett Ranch. My friend Andy lets me get all the rocks I want and sometimes even helps me using their backhoe. He also loads me up with dirt when I need it. Yeah, I know, I'm one lucky guy. As I was driving through the ranch I was both amazed and saddened by the huge live oaks that were on the ranch. Although there are hundreds of acres of beautiful big live oaks there were also an equal amount of dead and dying oaks as well. It's such a shame that trees older than our country can be killed by tiny bugs and parasites. I get a sad on that lasts for days after seeing this.

I also saw this flock of wild turkey gobblers running through the dead limbs. I love watching turkeys. They are not too bright but they are really majestic looking. There isn't any hunting for turkeys on the Burkett Ranch as they are Mr. Burkett's pride and joy. They come right up to his house to feed in the evenings before they go to roost. That man loves his turkeys.


Chandramouli S said...

You definitely are a lucky guy, Bob! I agree with you about turkeys - they look beautiful. A friend of mine grows turkeys (I guess they have around 5 or some females and a male that looks beautiful) and she says it's fun watching them.

Unknown said...

Wow, amazing to see that many oaks taken down.

Annie in Austin said...

How awful it must be, Bob, to watch the huge trees die and know you can't save them.

When I was a kid in Illinois driving down certain streets was like driving through a cool green tunnel in summer, with American Elms arching over the roadway. Those trees fell as tiny beetles spread the microscopic spores of Dutch elm disease over the whole Chicago area.

Nature's play goes on, cast members drop out, and a call goes out for understudies.
But what else could play the role of a live oak?

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Bob said...

It makes me sad Bonnie but the ranchers don't mind as less oaks, less shade, so more grass for the cows. Cows are always first for them.

Annie, I've noticed it's always the fast growing trees like hackberries and chinaberries that come up. That makes it even worse.