Preservationists fight to save rare albino redwood tree in Cotati

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Laila Kearney, REUTERS
Northern California preservationists are fighting to keep a rare albino redwood, one of just 10 trees of its kind known to exist, from being chopped down to make way for a new commuter rail system, arborists and city officials said on Wednesday.
The albino chimera coast redwood, standing 52 feet high in a commercial district of Cotati, a town in California’s wine country, also is the tallest and widest specimen of its type, said Tom Stapleton, a certified arborist who is leading a group of researchers and community members pushing to save the tree.
“To lose this tree would be an absolutely huge loss to science and the ability to study albinism in redwoods,” Stapleton said.
The tree is a form of albino redwood with a genetic mutation that causes its branches to be striped, in a candy cane-like pattern, with a mix of green and white needles.
It stands 12 feet away from a planned stretch of the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit line, a voter-approved passenger rail and bicycle-pedestrian pathway system.
via Preservationists fight to save rare albino redwood tree in California | Reuters.

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