Re: ‘Eagle trees’ toppled for public safety, May 21.
I’m not going to pretend to know the full scope of the issues by reading this story. On the surface, it seems like a resident developing property has no way to build without cutting roots; opposition and offers become futile; and there goes four trees.
Not surprising, chainsaws are fast becoming the sounds of South Surrey and White Rock. At the risk of being branded a tree hugger – which I’m not – here’s what I don’t get:
Why did it have to be done now? Are there no provisions in place through the city to protect certain trees during the nesting season? Was there a deadline that must be met regardless of potential devastation to nesting habitat?
Every time I hear someone speak about falling trees, it either has to do with view obstruction or they throw out the default card of public safety. So, if I cut the roots to trees, they have to come down. How convenient.
Trees versus public safety? This is an environment that has supported these trees long before we were born. I don’t think the trees are the problem, it’s the public who is nesting next to them who are developing fears and excuses.
Who are we attracting to our neighbourhoods? As I go on walks, I see people immersed in natural beauty, checking out the eagles above, noticing the changes to the foliage, all sorts of great experiences. However, when it comes to their plot of land, all hell breaks loose. No vision, just a slash-and-build mentality.
Clearly we have limited access to architects who know how to integrate home with nature. Some of the greats knew how to do that, but maybe people like paying big bucks for regurgitated home designs.
I’ve heard one resident dispute that those trees were even eagle habitat. It’s all eagle habitat! Our habitat is defined by one building with our address affixed on it. Theirs is any tree that provides rest, view for hunting and nesting opportunities.
Eagles only venture a few metres from a nest, so I think it is safe to say if they were hanging around, these trees were of some importance.
I don’t expect that all the trees that have stood the test of time will live forever; especially not as the community expands. My confusion lies in that I’m not sure who is running the show out here: city, developers or every homeowner who has an axe to wield.
What I do know is there needs to be some balance and common sense and neither of those two things seems to be happening much lately.
J. Chandler, Surrey