Poisoned poplars ready for removal from Wānaka lakeside

by Kim Bowden - Jun 13, 2024

Dozens of trees beside a beach on Lake Wānaka are set to be removed after being illegally poisoned.

Work will begin on Monday to take out the stand of 43 poplar trees on Beacon Point Road.

In announcing the commencement of the job, the Queenstown Lakes District Council says it's "beyond disappointing" to have to be doing so.

The location of 43 poisoned poplar trees in Wānaka (Image: Facebook/QLDC).

"There wouldn’t be a need for this operation if it wasn’t for the act of vandalism to these poplar trees which now pose a risk to the health and safety of track users."

The council expects the work to take four days, with a temporary closure of the end of Beacon Point Road necessary for the initial felling and processing of the trees.

In February, a Wānaka arborist told Crux they had been called on to respond to a number of similarly damaged trees in the area in recent years.

It was the view of the arborist that local residents were intentionally harming trees out of "arrogance", because they felt entitled to an unobstructed lake view.

It is unknown who poisoned the poplars at this location.

According to the arborist, the bill for removing 40-odd trees could be up to $20,000.


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