The Nickey Line appears to be seeing the highest usage ever thanks to the lockdown and recent good weather. We in Friends of the Nickey Line have done a couple of spot counts of usage to check our impressions of exceptional usage and levels do seem to be higher than our record count of July 13 of over 4000 uses in a week. Great to see you all out there!
Bartlett Tree Experts, who have been commissioned by the Forestry Commission to deal with OPM infected trees, have sprayed suspect trees on the NIckey Line by 5 Ways (extension of Townsend Lane)
Treatment (spraying) involves 2 /3 visits, the next one due in about 2 weeks time. We understand OPM has been spreading northwards in Hertfordshire, that this is the furthest north it has been reported in the county, and that Bartlett have been dealing with ‘hundreds’ of reports.
OPM caterpillars can be found in oak trees, where they feed on oak leaves, causing significant damage. They travel in nose-to-tail processions (hence their name), often arrow-headed, with a leader followed by rows of several caterpillars abreast. They are a human irritant because of their venomous setae (hairs), which can cause skin irritation and asthma.
Our Facebook Group “The Nickey Line” is available for all Nickey Line users to publish pictures, comments and stories about the Line.