THE idyllically named Spring Gully, at Bundeena, having partly succumbed to the lure of future development, now faces attack from a different angle after at least 28 trees were destroyed.
They were located around the 5.6 hectares of bushland close to the Royal National Park, near land sold by Scouts Australia (NSW) last year for potential ecotourism use.
Spring Gully Protection Group spokesman Mark Da Silva said the trees of various sizes and species had been vandalised or cut down on the unmade road, Sussex Street.
The unformed road, which exists on a map, is on land adjoining the former Scouts land and was set in the subdivision plan before 1920.
Sussex Street runs along a ridge on the southern side of the site to be developed.
"The affected trees are in the area, which has been recently surveyed," Mr Da Silva said.
"Around 16 trees, including one angophora, which has been ring-barked, are on the Sussex Street reserve [and] around 12 have been destroyed on the former Scouts land property in the vicinity of Sussex Street.
"On Sussex Street there are 48 trees with metal tags nailed into them. I assume this was done by the surveyors. All up, hundreds of trees on Sussex Street and the former Scouts land have been tagged with metal tags.
"Hundreds more trees have been painted with white spray paint. Many dozens of trees have had pink surveyors' tape tied around them."
A Sutherland Shire Council spokeswoman said the council received two reports regarding extensive tree vandalism on Sussex Street, near the boundary of 60-70 Bournemouth Street, Bundeena.
"Council views tree vandalism and the removal of trees very seriously," the spokeswoman said.
"Offenders can face large penalties, including fines or prosecution.
"Council has written to surrounding residents seeking assistance in identifying those responsible for committing these offences.
"Anyone with information about this environmental destruction is encouraged to contact council."
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