It would be fair to say that the day to day life of a Tree Surgeon is varied at best.
At the start of the month I was called to see a customer in Whiteparish who had a tree that had shed a large limb, probably 50% of the crown and inevitably left a large wound on the remaining stem. I advised him that, because of the size of the wound and the now unbalanced remaining crown, it would be best to remove the tree before it fell and damaged the wall underneath.
On closer inspection, I was struggling to identify exactly what species we were looking at. The customer then asked "Do you know what species it is then?” to which I could only reply "No sir, I do not”. It turned out to be a Hackberry tree, a species I had not come across in the 10 years I've spent working in the industry. Not commonly found on these shores, it is native to Canada and a relative of the Elm, which sadly we also do not come across much these days.
I was asked to take down what was left of the tree and log and split the whole tree, a back braking task at the best of times. Having never worked with this wood before it was a bit of a gamble estimating how long it would take us split up; boy was I in for a shock!
The day of the job came arrived and we set to work promptly at 8:30am. The tree was down by 12pm and now it was time for the logging. It is at this point of these jobs that you learn if you are going to have a good day or a bad day.
So I pick up a nice smooth 12inch cylinder log ready for the first swoop of the axe. It was then when I knew my gamble may not pay off. The axe bounced off of the log like it was made of toffee, my stomach dropped as I looked at my buddy and we knew we were going to be here for a long long time!
From Axe Men to Pet Rescue!
We were having a run of the mill day taking down a 30ft silver birch tree, when I picked up a rather distressed message on my answer machine from a couple in Cholderton who were house sitting for a friend. The owner’s pedigree cat had been stuck in an ash tree for the last 36 hours and they were desperate to get it down.
So I left the lads to finish the birch job and off I went on my cat rescue mission. On my arrival I could hear Maggie before I could see her. I met the couple and they pointed me to the tree. Maggie had managed to get herself 40ft up in the Ash tree and wasn’t moving for anyone.
Off I went up this tree with my tesco bag for cats to save this stranded feline. After 5 minutes of coaching and some friendly words of advice Maggie and I had built up enough of a relationship for her to move off her branch on to my lap (now purring). Refusing to go in my tesco bag for life obviously, we made our descent slowly with Maggie under my arm holding on for dear life!
Maggie and I reached firm ground safely and with little fuss, where we were greeted with open arms by the house sitters who grabbed Maggie and whisked her off inside where she will be spending most of her time from now on I guess!
We can now add cat rescue to our list of services!