Monarchs: Eucalyptus globulus introductions versus preserving naturalcommunities

Paul Cherubini monarch at
Sat Jan 26 23:53:06 EST 2002

Patrick wrote:

> On page 185 of this you may read:

> The fuel complex formed by this debris 
> is extremely flammable, and under severe weather
> conditions could produce drifting burning material with the 
> potential to ignite numerous spot fires. Because stringy bark
> is carried away while burning, eucalyptus forests are 
> considered the worst in the world for spreading spot fires. 
> The Oakland hills firestorm was both intense and difficult to
> control because of the many stands of eucalyptus."

Again I agree Pat. but is the eucalyptus fire hazard risk substantial or

We all know, for example, that #1 safety concern of oil refineries, 
nuclear power plants and air force bases along the California coast 
is fire.  Yet what is the #1 tree we see planted as an ornamental 
around these plants in California? Answer: blue gum eucalyptus.  

Indeed, the blue gum eucalyptus growing around the Chevron refineries at El
Segundo, Carpinteria and Gaviota is dense enough to support substantial
monarch overwintering sites. Ditto for a stand next to the Diablo Canyon
nuclear power plant, a stand next to an electric power plant in Moss
Landing and numerous stands surrounding the missile launch pads at 
Van den berg air force base.  In the San Francisco Bay Area there 
are substantial stands of blue gum eucalyptus growing
within the Tosco /Union Oil/Shell Oil refinery complexes in Richmond, 
Rodeo and Martinez.  

Paul Cherubini


   For subscription and related information about LEPS-L visit: 

More information about the Leps-l mailing list