I was surprised and pleased to read today that state officials have nabbed two of the men whose burl-poaching activities made headlines last year.
They took chainsaws to old-growth redwoods in a State Park, carving away large burls which are prized for their unusual curly figure and command a high price with furnituremakers and turners. The slabs of burl were found for sale and helped investigators trace their way back to the criminals. Although the men are just two of many poachers operating in the area, it is encouraging that state officials successfully found and prosecuted the pair after a year-long search. Since trees are living organisms, an open wound leaves them vulnerable to infection. So it is really a shame to harm these ancient trees to make a quick buck.