Mystery surrounds the removal, last week, of a River Red Gum

Only a stump left

Only a stump left

Chainsaw marks in another nearby tree

Chainsaw marks in another nearby tree

The stump of the River Red Gum

The stump of the River Red Gum

All that is left of a healthy, medium sized, River Red Gum is its stump.

And to make matters worse a nearby River Red Gum, of a similar size, has chainsaw marks in its trunk which suggests it could be the next one removed from Clydesdale Reserve. The reserve located is on the banks of the Hunter River near Redbournberry Bridge and is managed by Singleton Council.

It is part of a series of habitats created, in part, to attract the flying fox population out of the central urban area of Singleton along the Hunter River from the railway bridge to Redbournberry Bridge, at Clydesdale and Heuston Lookout.

Native trees were planted nearly a decade ago including the valuable and endangered River Red Gums. The tree has probably one of the fastest growth rates attaining a height of 12-15metres in a few years.

The Singleton Argus has been told the tree was cut down last week and in the process damaged a power line located nearby.

Then later on, we were told, the main trunk of the tree, that contains the highly sought after slabs, was removed.

With an estimated diametre of 64cm the slabs, provided they were of a quality required by cabinet makers/carpenters, could have been worth up to $1000/each. The tree may have contained 10 such slabs.

Commenting on the situation Damian Morris, Council's Manager Infrastructure Services said "Council has reported the incident to police." "Council staff transported the felled tree to the Waste Management Facility in keeping with Council's processes, for the safety of the community."