What is ash dieback?



<img src="https://images.immediate.co.uk/production/volatile/sites/4/2022/11/GettyImages675445424-2eb02db.jpg?quality=90&#038;resize=620,413" srcset="https://images.immediate.co.uk/production/volatile/sites/4/2022/11/GettyImages675445424-2eb02db.jpg?quality=90&amp;resize=720,479 720w, https://images.immediate.co.uk/production/volatile/sites/4/2022/11/GettyImages675445424-2eb02db.jpg?quality=90&amp;resize=576,383 576w, https://images.immediate.co.uk/production/volatile/sites/4/2022/11/GettyImages675445424-2eb02db.jpg?quality=90&amp;resize=360,239 360w, https://images.immediate.co.uk/production/volatile/sites/4/2022/11/GettyImages675445424-2eb02db.jpg?quality=90&amp;resize=180,119 180w, " sizes="(max-width: 620px) 100vw, 620px" width="620" height="413" class="wp-image-129893 alignnone size-landscape_thumbnail" alt="What is ash dieback? © Getty Images" title="What is ash dieback? © Getty Images" /> <p>Ash dieback is caused by a fungus called <a href="https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/tools-and-resources/fthr/pest-and-disease-resources/ash-dieback-hymenoscyphus-fraxineus/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Hymenoscyphus fraxineus</em></a>, which typically enters through the leaves before spreading throughout the tree, eventually strangling its water transport system and causing it to die. <em>H.fraxineus</em> spores spread on the wind, travelling distances up to 16km (10 miles).</p>
<p><a href="https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/trees-woods-and-wildlife/tree-pests-and-diseases/key-tree-pests-and-diseases/ash-dieback/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Ash dieback</a>, which originated in Asia, was first spotted in nurseries in eastern regions of the UK in 2012. Since then, it has spread westwards and is now <a href="https://cdn.forestresearch.gov.uk/2022/02/ashdieback_uk_outbreak_map4_10_web_version_may2020-scaled.jpg" target="_blank" rel="noopener">found throughout the British Isles</a>. There is no cure for the disease, and experts predict that it has the potential to obliterate up to 90 per cent of the UK’s 150 million mature ash trees, threaten dozens of species that rely exclusively on ash, and cost the economy an estimated £15bn.</p>
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<p><strong>Asked by: Ella Bradbury, via email</strong></p>
<p><em>To submit your questions email us at [email protected] (don’t forget to include your name and location)</em></p>



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