Did you know that moving firewood to new locations can be harmful to native forests?
Why is moving firewood a problem?
Georgia Forestry Commission Forest Health experts say moving firewood has been linked to the spread of destructive, non-native insects and diseases to forest ecosystems. While these pests can’t move far on their own, they can travel hundreds of miles when people move firewood, logs, chips, and mulch. Forest pests can kill our native trees and be very expensive, if not impossible, to control.
Many species of hardwood and pine trees serve as potential hosts for these destructive pests, so no firewood is considered safe to be moved long distances. Non-native organisms can wreak havoc on the environment. They are often resistant to natural controls and can spread unchecked, resulting in much greater harm to our forests than is experienced with native pests. Tiny, non-native insects and their larvae, and even microscopic fungus spores can hide in firewood that is transported by visitors into campsites and parks. They can fall unnoticed to the ground on a small chip of bark, or washed off the firewood from a sudden rainstorm.
What can you do?
To combat the threat and spread of non-native pests and diseases, campers visiting Georgia are asked to leave their firewood at home and purchase local wood. If wood has been inadvertently brought into camp, it should be burned on-site or turned over to park officials.
For more information, check out the Georgia Forestry Commission’s Fact Sheet on the dangers of moving firewood.
Information retrieved from The Georgia Forestry Commission website.