Our neighborhood once had a profusion of large trees in private yards and along the streets. But in the past ten years, many of Eastlake’s large trees have been cut down or damaged in their prime.
This is despite growing evidence that large trees are needed to reverse global warming, to preserve songbirds and birds of prey, and to protect the physical and psychological health of those who live or work in Eastlake. Trees supply clean air, slope stability, shade, beauty, and noise insulation. They grace our public spaces, and can greatly increase the value of private property.
Contrary to City plans and claims to be reversing decades of lost tree cover, the actual policies have the exact opposite impact, dooming many large trees and making them impossible to replace except by much smaller ones. Most trees that are being planted will always stay small, and can’t make up for the loss of large trees and a failure to plant trees that will become large.
An aware and organized public can improve some of these policies. Property owners will be less likely to remove or damage a tree if they know more about its benefits. You can help ECC’s tree conservation efforts by doing an inventory of those in your yard, on your block, in a park, or anywhere else in the neighborhood. See the tree page on the ECC web site, http://eastlakeseattle.org, for the inventory form and instructions, including books and web sites for help in identifying and measuring trees. For further information: firstname.lastname@example.org or (206) 322-5463.
Brook Zscheile, wildlife biologist with the US Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services branch will discuss his agency’s raccoon control efforts in Eastlake, as well as what we know about other mammal species like otter, beaver, muskrat, nutria, opossum, and squirrel. Also briefly covered will be bird species such as geese, ducks, gulls, crows, starlings, pigeons, woodpeckers, owls, eagles, osprey, herons, and cormorants.
The second speaker will be Donald Pace, health and environmental inspector from the Seattle-King County Department of Public Health. He will speak about the behavior and impact of rats and how they may be controlled. The department’s web resources include the following: http://www.kingcounty.gov/depts/health/environmental-health/animals/rat-prevention.aspx and http://www.kingcounty.gov/healthservices/health/ehs/rats.aspx.
Please bring your stories, questions, or issues about Eastlake’s wildlife species and control efforts. And whether or not you can come on May 9, please send your thoughts to ECC at email@example.com.
The Eastlake Community Council works to keep our neighborhood as safe as possible from crime and disasters, and to coordinate with the Seattle Police Department on these topics as well as the unique challenge of crowds and traffic on July 4. For many years, one focus of these efforts has been to organize an early summer public meeting, which this year is Tuesday, June 13, 7 p.m. at TOPS-Seward School, 2500 Franklin Ave. E.
ECC’s web site, http://eastlakeseattle.org has several pages and many links on these topics. Following are some highlights. Please send your e-mail address to firstname.lastname@example.org with questions, suggestions, or to volunteer.