I was flabbergasted the other day when I went for my daily walk in the Mierlo forest, which is the forest of my youth and a forest I know really well. All of a sudden, the forest is full of excavators, leaving destruction all around. As a mycologist, I find it extremely disturbing that the following awareness that should be common ground is still lacking in our political representations:
The use of excavators in the forest is a practice that has been widely criticized for its destructive effects on the environment. In particular, the use of these heavy machinery poses a threat to the delicate network of mycelium, the underground network of fungal filaments that play a crucial role in the health and vitality of the forest ecosystem.
At first glance, the damage caused by excavators may not seem like a big deal. After all, they are only digging a few holes here and there, right? Wrong. The truth is that the use of excavators in the forest disrupts the delicate balance of the ecosystem, and the effects of this disruption can be disastrous for the mycelium and the creatures that depend on it.
To understand the full extent of the damage caused by excavators, it is necessary to take a closer look at the role of the mycelium in the forest ecosystem. The mycelium is a network of fungal filaments that form a vast underground network, connecting the roots of different plants and trees. This network serves a number of important functions, including providing nutrients and water to the plants, regulating the flow of carbon and other essential elements, and even protecting the forest from disease and pests.
In short, the mycelium is the lifeblood of the forest, and the use of excavators in the forest threatens to disrupt this vital network. When an excavator digs into the ground, it tears through the delicate mycelium, disrupting the flow of nutrients and water, and potentially even killing off large sections of the network. The damage caused by excavators can be compounded over time, as the disrupted mycelium is unable to properly support the plants and trees, leading to a decline in their health and vitality.
This decline in the health of the forest has far-reaching consequences, not just for the plants and trees, but for the entire ecosystem. The mycelium plays a crucial role in supporting the diverse array of creatures that call the forest home, and a decline in the health of the mycelium can lead to a decline in the health of the creatures that depend on it. In addition to the immediate impacts on the forest ecosystem, the long-term consequences of the damage caused by excavators could be catastrophic, as the decline of the mycelium could ultimately lead to the collapse of the entire ecosystem.
So why do we continue to use excavators in the forest, despite the clear and present danger they pose to the mycelium and the broader ecosystem? The answer, unfortunately, is a lack of awareness and understanding of the importance of the mycelium, and the vital role it plays in the health of the forest.
In many ways, the mycelium is like the “default mode network” of the brain, a network of interconnected brain regions that are active when we are not focused on any specific task. Just as the default mode network plays a crucial role in our mental health and well-being, the mycelium plays a vital role in the health and vitality of the forest. And just as we often take the default mode network for granted, ignoring its importance until something goes wrong, we have similarly ignored the importance of the mycelium, allowing the use of excavators to continue unchecked.
But just as we would not want to damage our own default mode network, we should not want to damage the mycelium of the forest. The use of excavators in the forest is a short-sighted and destructive practice that threatens the long-term health and vitality of the ecosystem. It is time for us to recognize the importance of the mycelium, and to take steps to protect it from the destructive effects of excavators.
The guilty party in question here is ‘Bosgroep Zuid’, a company that even (can you believe it?) has an
excavator demolishing a forest in its website banner.
How on earth can we claim to be aware of nature when we hire such destructive thugs to kill the forest in the name of pseudo-science? They even got a huge grant from the Provincie Brabant for these activities, which is their real motive: to earn money selling wood for their bullshit-jobs and sell it as ‘ecological awareness’ to ‘bring back a few rare animal species’ that haven’t been seen there for decades and certainly wont come back when you destroy the forest and the mycelia even more. Stop it, now!!!