One Of The Largest Trees In The World Is Struggling To Survive A Termite Infestation

One Of The Largest Trees In The World Is Struggling To Survive A Termite Infestation

The country of India is home to numerous species of termites that are highly destructive to both manmade structures and various forms of native plant life. Termites are so menacing in some parts of India that entire villages have been evacuated in response to termite invasions. Now a popular tourist attraction in southern India has become a haven for termites. The world’s second largest banyan tree in the Pillalamarri of Mahabubnagar district in Telangana, India, has become infested with termites. Forestry officials in the Indian state are attempting to kill the tree’s termite population by resorting to a unique method of termite extermination.

The termite-infested banyan tree is more than seven hundred years old and it covers more than three acres of land. The tourist-heavy location is now closed off to the public by the region’s tourism department. The area will not be reopened to the public until the tree’s health is restored and the termite infestation is eradicated. Forestry officials initially tried to eradicate the tree’s termite habitat by injecting diluted insecticides directly into the tree’s stem and routes. However, this method did not work as the fluid did not circulate as planned. In response to this failure, officials started to inject the solution in a manner similar to a “saline drip”, and this method has proven effective.

In addition to the saline drip method, officials are watering the tree’s routes with diluted insecticides. Concrete structures are also being built in order to support the tree’s wilting branches. The routes are being given artificial strength and support through the use of installed pillars and pipes. Forestry officials have announced that the tree’s health has stabilized after the insecticide-filled saline bottles were placed at every point along the tree’s body. The saline bottles number in the hundreds for every two meters of the enormous banyan tree. This is the first case of a tree receiving a saline drip for the purposes of rejuvenation and termite eradication. If the Pillalamarri tree becomes termite free, it may once again become open to tourists.

Do you think that experimenting with novel termite eradication methods is the best way to develop new and superior methods of termite control?

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