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(Kennebec Journal)   Real Christmas tree vs. a fake one. For those that pick fake to be environmentally friendly, you're barking up the wrong tree   (kjonline.com) divider line 140
    More: Obvious, South China, planting trees, reforestation, mulch  
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7374 clicks; posted to Main » on 16 Dec 2012 at 8:59 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-16 09:02:47 AM  
You mean that 8-foot tall, 4 time use piece of metal and plastic isn't environmentally freindly?

I thought not planting hundreds of pine trees that would grow faster because of their youth and absorb significant amounts of carbon from the air was a good thing.
 
2012-12-16 09:03:54 AM  
I don't pick fake to be environmentally friendly. I pick fake so I don't have to go out and buy one every year and clean up the mess.
 
2012-12-16 09:07:31 AM  
TFA was actually an interesting read. Where I'm from, (Nova Scotia), shipping Xmas trees to the US is a fairly big industry.

Red spruce is the only real Xmas tree!
 
2012-12-16 09:08:36 AM  
I don't know a single person that buys one to be "green." I have a fake one because I remember from my youth how much of a pain in the ass real ones were.
 
2012-12-16 09:09:50 AM  

abhorrent1: I don't pick fake to be environmentally friendly. I pick fake so I don't have to go out and buy one every year and clean up the mess.


Exactly.
 
2012-12-16 09:09:54 AM  
Hey, you leave my 4.5' tree alone. It has feelings too you know.
 
2012-12-16 09:10:11 AM  
Jesus would've bought a real tree. Santa Clause would go fake.

I'm going with presents over getting carried across sandy beaches.
 
2012-12-16 09:10:14 AM  
I disagree. My mom bought a fake tree when I turned 15. She used that tree for years until I moved back home. Then we used my fake tree which I bought when my daughter was 5 and we still use now she's 20. My mom's old tree is in use at church every winter to hold hat, glove and scarf donations. Two fake trees with well over 30 years use between them and will probably be used for decades more. How is this enviornmentally unfriendly?
 
2012-12-16 09:13:40 AM  
Got a fake as: 1 - Mrs Gumby's allergies go nuts around a real tree, 2 - more cost effective in long run, 3 - less mess and more convenient
 
2012-12-16 09:14:11 AM  

abhorrent1: I don't pick fake to be environmentally friendly. I pick fake so I don't have to go out and buy one every year and clean up the mess.


Christmas tree bags. Check them out. Slip it on before you put it on the stand; then when its time to take it down it just slips over the tree and you take it out to the curb. Easy peasy.

There are also a variety of watering gadgets that work pretty good. As long as you get a good healthy tree and keep it watered, they don't drop a ton of needles.
 
2012-12-16 09:14:49 AM  
Fake tree because I have a 22' ceiling in the living room and don't want to pay hundreds of dollars for an 18' fire hazard.
 
2012-12-16 09:15:25 AM  
I don't use fake to be environmentally friendly. I use fake because I'd rather not set my home on fire when either of my cats chews through a cable.

/ Five years later, they've long since outgrown it, but every now and again...
 
2012-12-16 09:16:16 AM  
Real or fake, it's a stupid tradition.
 
2012-12-16 09:18:14 AM  
The only thing weirder than dragging a dying tree into your living room and worshipping it for several weeks is dragging a fake dying tree into your living room and worshipping it.

Plus I like the smell.
 
2012-12-16 09:18:21 AM  

Hermione_Granger: I disagree. My mom bought a fake tree when I turned 15. She used that tree for years until I moved back home. Then we used my fake tree which I bought when my daughter was 5 and we still use now she's 20. My mom's old tree is in use at church every winter to hold hat, glove and scarf donations. Two fake trees with well over 30 years use between them and will probably be used for decades more. How is this enviornmentally unfriendly?


This. I have my parent's old artificial one. Its probably 25 years old.

Granted, before they bought it, they would get live trees (usually long needled) with the roots and plant the trees in the yard after the season was over. Thats probably more environmentally friendly. I may do that when we have kids for a few years. Its pretty cool when I go home to know those massive trees were former christmas trees.
 
2012-12-16 09:18:27 AM  

kaseyfarksdaladies: Real or fake, it's a stupid tradition.


Decorating anything for any reason is stupid. fark aesthetics, am I right?
 
2012-12-16 09:19:07 AM  
we use one of those Charlie Brown trees.
 
2012-12-16 09:20:35 AM  

Gortex: TFA was actually an interesting read. Where I'm from, (Nova Scotia), shipping Xmas trees to the US is a fairly big industry.

Red spruce is the only real Xmas tree!


Well I guess if that's all you can get it's close enough. Norway Spruce FTW.
 
2012-12-16 09:20:38 AM  
Anyone else have had issues trying to get grouse or squirrels out if their tree?

/just get a farking aluminium pole
 
2012-12-16 09:22:16 AM  
Fake. I am allergic to real.

/ it took a long time to realize real wasn't worth the problems.
// Too bad. I love real trees.
 
2012-12-16 09:23:57 AM  

Kimpak: Christmas tree bags. Check them out. Slip it on before you put it on the stand; then when its time to take it down it just slips over the tree and you take it out to the curb. Easy peasy.

There are also a variety of watering gadgets that work pretty good. As long as you get a good healthy tree and keep it watered, they don't drop a ton of needles.


Still an all around pain in the ass. Drive to the lot, pick one, strap it to your car. drag it in the house etc. etc.... Plus having to spend $50 or more every year.
Got my fake one about 10 years ago for like $99. No annual cost and it takes me about 30 second to go out to the garage and get it when it's time to put it up.
 
2012-12-16 09:27:08 AM  
There are more trees now in the USA than there were 100 years ago.

GLOBAL WARMING.
 
2012-12-16 09:27:59 AM  
Fake. The last real one was 9 years ago with a brand new stand. Unbeknownst to us, the stand had a crack in it and it leaked water for almost a month. Ruined the oriental rug and the wood floor underneath so I spent a month fixing the floor including spalting red oak planks to match the rest of the floor.
 
2012-12-16 09:28:32 AM  

Hermione_Granger: I disagree. My mom bought a fake tree when I turned 15. She used that tree for years until I moved back home. Then we used my fake tree which I bought when my daughter was 5 and we still use now she's 20. My mom's old tree is in use at church every winter to hold hat, glove and scarf donations. Two fake trees with well over 30 years use between them and will probably be used for decades more. How is this enviornmentally (sic) unfriendly?


Because you didn't read TFA, that's why.
 
2012-12-16 09:29:29 AM  

GORDON: There are more trees now in the USA than there were 100 years ago.

GLOBAL WARMING.


But 100 years ago they were giant chestnuts, elms, oaks, and walnuts. Now they're dinky little Bradford Pears and weeping cherries.
 
2012-12-16 09:29:51 AM  
Throughout Maine, more than 1.2 million Christmas trees are growing quietly on about 300 plots of land. Each tree will progress slowly from seed to seedling, from youth to maturity, until they're harvested 12 years later for their brief moment of glory in living rooms and parlors throughout the land.

The fark kind of trees are you using as christmas trees, white oak? Your standard 6-8 foot fir hits full size in three years. I know this because a neighbor used to raise them, he had three lots that he cycled.

//Oh, confiers... why? Why not use something that grows faster?

"Real Christmas trees sequester carbon while they're growing," she said. "The ground they're growing in keeps building up organic matter, which also helps keep carbon out of the atmosphere and in the soil."

Also, nearly all Christmas tree growers plant a new tree for every one that is cut down, so sequestration continues long after the holidays, she said.

Artificial trees, on the other hand, cannot be recycled whenever their usable life ends, plus a lot of fossil fuels are burned to create and ship them to the U.S, she said.


... ok, when I read "doctorate in plant and soil sciences", my first reaction was genuine curiosity, since I've never seen a school have any department labeled like that, it's typically agriculture or botany.

Then I read the above (plus the bit where they're encouraging "organic" farming) and realized it's one of those internet degrees from an unaccredited university with no physical campus or actual faculty. I know this because if it _was_ a real degree, and you published a nonsense phrase of incorrectly-used buzzwords like "trees sequester carbon while they're growing" without taking the fifteen seconds to google what sequestration actually means, your thesis advisor would hunt you down and beat you to death with a baseball bat with rusty nails sticking out of it.

//Also, not knowing that PET and HDPE, the two most common plastics in trees, are both recyclable, is pretty unforgivable for anyone with pretenses toward scientific literacy. As is not knowing that short sappy evergreens aren't meaningfully recyclable, as it takes more energy and produces more pollution to turn them into paper or particle board than just letting it rot somewhere and making new paper out of a proper wood.

//farking ignorant-ass hippies have ruined environmentalism for the actual, knowledgeable conservationists. We really need to look into resurrecting Theodore Roosevelt.
 
2012-12-16 09:31:27 AM  
My parents used the same fake tree my entire life until I was about 35, and they bought it three years before I was born.

Turns out if you don't buy the cheapest fake tree you can find, it might last more than a small handful of years.
 
2012-12-16 09:32:27 AM  

mike_d85: You mean that 8-foot tall, 4 time use piece of metal and plastic isn't environmentally freindly?


Where exactly did you get that they can only be used 4 times? Most people buy one and it last them for life, I've had mine for 20 years now and it looks the same as the day I bought it.
 
2012-12-16 09:32:47 AM  
Trees are a renewable resource.
Growing trees are better for the environment than preserving old trees.

We should encourage people to cut down trees.
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2012-12-16 09:33:14 AM  
Real tree
S are for the yard

Real trees are for the yard. Keep the needles outside along with the spiders and stink bugs
 
2012-12-16 09:33:46 AM  
The first thing of Christmas that's such a pain to me....
 
2012-12-16 09:33:50 AM  
We switch between the two. My family always did a fake tree; my husband's family did real. If we aren't going to be home for Xmas, we use our fake tree. If we are, we get a real one. This year we are staying in town, so we got a real one. I hate the needles, but it smells nice. Both have advantages and disadvantages, and It's really what you want to put up with.
 
2012-12-16 09:37:20 AM  
I go with fake at my house because dragging an artificial tree out of the basement and decorating it once a year for a month is slightly less moronic than driving for miles to get a tree that was cut down for the sole purpose of schlepping it home, mounting it in a base, keeping the thing watered, vacuuming pine needles, trying to avoid getting sap all over everything, using meds and air filters to keep the allergens from getting to me and trimming it with ornaments only to throw it out a month later and pack everything back up so we can go through it again next year.
 
2012-12-16 09:39:54 AM  
This is why I have switched to a Festivus end table.
 
2012-12-16 09:40:41 AM  

Jim_Callahan: Throughout Maine, more than 1.2 million Christmas trees are growing quietly on about 300 plots of land. Each tree will progress slowly from seed to seedling, from youth to maturity, until they're harvested 12 years later for their brief moment of glory in living rooms and parlors throughout the land.

The fark kind of trees are you using as christmas trees, white oak? Your standard 6-8 foot fir hits full size in three years. I know this because a neighbor used to raise them, he had three lots that he cycled.

//Oh, confiers... why? Why not use something that grows faster?

"Real Christmas trees sequester carbon while they're growing," she said. "The ground they're growing in keeps building up organic matter, which also helps keep carbon out of the atmosphere and in the soil."

Also, nearly all Christmas tree growers plant a new tree for every one that is cut down, so sequestration continues long after the holidays, she said.

Artificial trees, on the other hand, cannot be recycled whenever their usable life ends, plus a lot of fossil fuels are burned to create and ship them to the U.S, she said.

... ok, when I read "doctorate in plant and soil sciences", my first reaction was genuine curiosity, since I've never seen a school have any department labeled like that, it's typically agriculture or botany.

Then I read the above (plus the bit where they're encouraging "organic" farming) and realized it's one of those internet degrees from an unaccredited university with no physical campus or actual faculty. I know this because if it _was_ a real degree, and you published a nonsense phrase of incorrectly-used buzzwords like "trees sequester carbon while they're growing" without taking the fifteen seconds to google what sequestration actually means, your thesis advisor would hunt you down and beat you to death with a baseball bat with rusty nails sticking out of it.

//Also, not knowing that PET and HDPE, the two most common plastics in trees, are both recyclable, is pretty unforgivable for anyone with pretenses toward scientific literacy. As is not knowing that short sappy evergreens aren't meaningfully recyclable, as it takes more energy and produces more pollution to turn them into paper or particle board than just letting it rot somewhere and making new paper out of a proper wood.

//farking ignorant-ass hippies have ruined environmentalism for the actual, knowledgeable conservationists. We really need to look into resurrecting Theodore Roosevelt.


1. Trees DO sequester carbon while growing. What happens afterward determines the long term effects. Burn them and you get nowhere, but dump them in a landfill and you make a dent.

2. Do you think most people recycle fake trees or throw them out? I would guess throw them out based on my experience with how little people recycle in my area.
 
2012-12-16 09:41:24 AM  
More environmentally friendly?

img841.imageshack.us
 
2012-12-16 09:41:29 AM  
Personally, I prefer the real thing because of the smell and of course the fact that it is real, and I have never seen a fake one that looks equally good without spending thousands of dollars on it.

For convenience I have a fake one because cleanup is a biatch on the real deal.
 
2012-12-16 09:42:12 AM  
@ Jim_Callahan....

see thats why i love Fark . someone smarter/non-lazy researcher will come along and smack down whatever nonsense they are spewing and teach you a thing or two . Oh ...fake tree guy here btw ...lol . after having 2 kids try and topple my tree for years , i went to fake . plastic decos too . no breakage or split water .
 
2012-12-16 09:42:47 AM  

mike_d85: I thought not planting hundreds of pine trees that would grow faster because of their youth and absorb significant amounts of carbon from the air was a good thing.


... and then the CO2 is released again when the tree rots/burns. Or are you one of those people who keeps the tree alive and growing perpetually, for each tree for every year you get one?

The process that removes CO2 from the air and keeps it out is the one that produces petroleum/coal. Trees will lock it into solid form while they're alive.

... but to grow a tree, and then toss it out doesn't accomplish anything.
 
2012-12-16 09:46:01 AM  
I pick fake because I take it out of the box, plug it in, and its ready to decorate.

As for the environmental concerns. You know what else absorbs CO2 and gives off O2? Forests that aren't cut down annually to be turned into mulch (or landfill).

Also, those trucks that filled with trees dont run on Santa's magic fairy dust. (it's dead dinosaurs)
 
2012-12-16 09:47:53 AM  
What, and perpetuate the war on Christmas?

The Book of the Prophet Jeremiah 10

2 thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.
3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.
4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.
 
2012-12-16 09:48:43 AM  

jwmc1971: @ Jim_Callahan....

see thats why i love Fark . someone smarter/non-lazy researcher will come along and smack down whatever nonsense they are spewing and teach you a thing or two . Oh ...fake tree guy here btw ...lol . after having 2 kids try and topple my tree for years , i went to fake . plastic decos too . no breakage or split water .


Was Jim a brilliant researcher or did he just tell you what you wanted to hear and rant at the clouds about hippies?

Because I'm almost positive it is the latter.
 
2012-12-16 09:55:45 AM  
The fake tree has been much better on my blood pressure.
 
2012-12-16 09:57:19 AM  
My parents bought a plastic tree a couple years before I was born. We used it for more than 20 years.
 
2012-12-16 10:01:09 AM  
Our family has always used fake trees. Even if I wanted to, I wouldn't begin to know what on Earth to do with a real one. I guess where some would associate Christmas with the smell of a real tree, I associate the smell of plastic warmed slightly by the lights.

I don't know if it is true now, but the tree my parents bought 15 years ago, to replace the old tree which my brother still uses, was manufactured in the U.S by General Foam Plastics in Norfolk, VA. I've driven by that place once or twice, but I don't know if they are still making them. So maybe there is a qualifier to the "...lot of fossil fuels are burned to create and ship them to the U.S" statement from the article.
 
2012-12-16 10:04:41 AM  
One year, due to the lack of conifers, I decorated a sea fan.

Looked great, smelled like sh*t.
 
2012-12-16 10:06:35 AM  
If I bothered with xmas trees, it would be fake, because of the link below.
However, I want others to use real, also because of the link below.

A friend used to have a traditional Easter fire the night before Easter. The main event would be the burning of the old Christmas trees & wreaths. Even after a wet winter, they'd burn like no one's business.

Fire is cool.
 
2012-12-16 10:06:45 AM  

ramblinwreck: I don't know a single person that buys one to be "green." I have a fake one because I remember from my youth how much of a pain in the ass real ones were.


You're not supposed to sit on them, dummy.
 
2012-12-16 10:07:18 AM  
If the American Christmas Tree Association says artificial is better over 10+ years, I'm gonna go with that over some guy spreading un-researched rumours.

Link

Also, FTA
During that slow, silent journey, the trees will provide habitat for birds and insects and they will absorb carbon dioxide from the air and deliver it into the soil.

...and then...

Twice a year, in spring and late summer, Bradbury applies more than a ton of fertilizer to the tree bases. He also applies herbicide around young trees because grass can overwhelm and kill them. In May, he typically sprays for bugs, particularly the balsam twig aphid. He also mows between the rows about 10 times a year during the growing months.

Yay environment!!11!!
 
2012-12-16 10:08:55 AM  
After I saw a real one catch fire in a friend's house some 30 years ago and destroy the place in a matter of a few minutes, I never bought a real one after that. I really like them, but the heat from that tree was so intense we couldn't get near it to do anything about it.
 
2012-12-16 10:12:26 AM  
I like a real one but the fake ones are easier to decorate.

They hold the heavier ornaments more easily and if you don't like the way an ornament is hanging, you just bend the branch.
 
2012-12-16 10:15:39 AM  
I dealt with real Xmas trees for 20 years. Trust me, imitation trees are the way to go.
 
2012-12-16 10:17:48 AM  

FreeLawyer: Fake. I am allergic to real.

/ it took a long time to realize real wasn't worth the problems.
// Too bad. I love real trees.


This is my tale of woe as well. I finally got tired of having bronchitis by New Years.
 
2012-12-16 10:18:21 AM  
more than 1.2 million Christmas trees are growing quietly

Yes, thanks.
 
2012-12-16 10:19:26 AM  
Fake. I like real ones, and my family always got real ones up until a few years ago when they started spraying them with something that made my allergies go berserk. My eyes swelled completely shut and burned like hell.
 
2012-12-16 10:20:49 AM  
Fake, miniature, silver, prelit, no ornaments. With a larger family, especially ones with young children, picking out, setting up, and decorating a real tree helps to observe Christmas.
 
2012-12-16 10:22:00 AM  

fightingnewfoundlander: more than 1.2 million Christmas trees are growing quietly

Yes, thanks.


www.escobarshighlandfarm.com
Soon
 
2012-12-16 10:23:45 AM  
Real trees are also more environmentally sound that artificial ones, said Jean English, editor of the Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener newspaper, who also holds master's and doctorate degrees in plant and soil sciences.

Someone who has spent money on their master's and doctorate degree in plant and soil sciences is in favor of real trees? That's a shocker.

"We like getting out and cutting your own. It just seems more real," said Ellis.

More real than...uh...reality?

"Never. No. Never ever, ever," she said. "I'm anti-artificial Christmas tree. They ruin the Christmas spirit."

Everyone in this article is clinically insane.
 
2012-12-16 10:25:32 AM  
They're also green in an environmental sense.
Said teh Maine Christmas Tree Trade Group -

My plastic tree was manufactured, transported displayed, bought, used, stored, and used and stored and used and stored and used and stored, and used and stored and used and stored and used,and stored, and used and stored and used and stored and used.
Did not need to be cut every year, transported and distributed every year dragged home every year didn't need to go the the lot every year, get wrapped every year.
My miserable plastic tree will never rise to be considered a hair-loomic sort of thing. It has never been beautiful only useful. Really, when you think of it, how much of the tree can you see if you've decorated it? Years from now it can become part of the trash stream - ONCE -
cue the "I'm okay with this" jpeg
 
2012-12-16 10:28:44 AM  
Fake all the way for my family. My parents bought a 7ft fake tree about 25 years ago and still use it each year. It doesn't look as good as newer trees, and is starting to look a bit sparse, but once all the lights and ornaments are on it, it looks great. They keep saying they might buy a new one, but I don't think they will until a branch falls off or something.

I bought my own fake tree this year. Spent a pretty penny to get one that looks the way I want it to look, but I figure if it lasts me 20+ years, I win.

My parents occasionally get a real tree to put out on the back patio. They'll pick up a little reject tree from a seller and put some lights on it.
 
2012-12-16 10:29:03 AM  

MayoBoy: Ruined the oriental rug

Asian American

rug, please.
 
2012-12-16 10:29:18 AM  

Marcintosh: how much of the tree can you see if you've decorated it?


My mother buys real trees and gets them flocked or whatever the fark it's called. I though it was fake when I first saw it. I don't get it. And the smell everyone loves? Yeah, they make candles and air fresheners that smell exactly the same.
 
2012-12-16 10:32:18 AM  
Fake trees don't cause me to have an asthma attack, so I prefer those.
 
2012-12-16 10:36:31 AM  
I'm watching my decorated real tree not take up any water, so I'm getting a real kick....from the anticipation of the huge bonfire that will be my living room in a week or so.
 
2012-12-16 10:43:09 AM  
Not friendly to environment but friendly to the living tree. That tree has been growing for over ten years just so you can cut it down, decorate it's carcass and pretend you have a functional family for a couple weeks.
 
2012-12-16 10:47:27 AM  
There's other work, too. Twice a year, in spring and late summer, Bradbury applies more than a ton of fertilizer to the tree bases. He also applies herbicide around young trees because grass can overwhelm and kill them. In May, he typically sprays for bugs, particularly the balsam twig aphid. He also mows between the rows about 10 times a year during the growing months.

Yeah, both are bad for the environment. One is probably only marginally better than the other.
 
2012-12-16 10:50:52 AM  
I'm sure the fake tree I got 15 years ago for $1.50 at a thrift store is the cause of global warming.
 
2012-12-16 10:51:46 AM  
Having Christmas with a fake tree is like having sex with a blow up doll.
 
2012-12-16 10:56:34 AM  
Last 2 years we bought a live tree.
And by live I mean with root ball intact, balled and burlaped, and then planted them in the yard after Christmas.

Where should I line up for my smugness award?

/fyi b&b trees are a lot farking heavier than you think
 
2012-12-16 10:58:01 AM  
One friend has an artificial tree. He never takes it down, just shuts off the lights. We have an even simpler approach: no Xmas and no tree!
 
2012-12-16 11:01:24 AM  

arentevenwords: /fyi b&b trees are a lot farking heavier than you think


Not a bad idea. Bet the cats aren't going to knock it down by climbing it, either.
 
2012-12-16 11:01:46 AM  
I've been using the same artificial tree for 5 years now instead of buying a new real one each year.
 
2012-12-16 11:01:50 AM  

The Southern Dandy: Having Christmas with a fake tree is like having sex with a blow up doll.


And Christmas it's self isn't a blowup doll?

Pffft

commercial, merchandised, credit carded holiday - thinking about it, I would submit that Memorial Day and the Fourth of July are about the least merchandised holiday in the US.
We have parties, parades and some furniture sales. There aren't special sale days for the Fourth either and the parades are not really merchandising for any one thing.
 
2012-12-16 11:02:10 AM  

Jim_Callahan: //farking ignorant-ass hippies have ruined environmentalism for the actual, knowledgeable conservationists. We really need to look into resurrecting Theodore Roosevelt.


Amen to that.

See, the reason a lot of people didn't do fake trees when we were kids or before was, simply put, fake trees looked fake. Now that they're getting more realistic looking trees, made to be recycled, it's not such a bad thing.

\totally remember how lame my grandmother's old tree looked, as it was about twenty when I was born in the mid-70s
\\still have her "new" tree
 
2012-12-16 11:04:20 AM  
I think the real lesson to be learned is that essentially people like to argue-- especially internet people. Is there a more inane topic than real vs. artificial Christmas trees? Reading these comments is like bizzaro world to me. Do you people really care that much or do you just want to say something? We've already diverged into religion and how holiday traditions are stupid. Wow, it just blows my mind. For the record, we have a live tree. My boys like to cut it down, the cat likes to climb it, the dog likes to drink the water, I like the smell and my wife likes the fact that it forces me to take down the decorations before February. My parents have artificial. It's easy, it looks good. It always fits their space. It leaves no mess and they don't have to worry about watering it. It's all good.
 
2012-12-16 11:18:35 AM  

senoy: Is there a more inane topic than real vs. artificial Christmas trees?


Sure. It's all good and we all realize that. But read the thread again. This isn't about "fake is better than real", that's just up to preference, and nobody's making any sort of big deal about that. (If this is an argument, it's the tamest argument Fark has ever seen.) The near-unanimous point expressed by this thread, utterly refuting TFA, and regardless of actual preference, is that environmentalism has almost nothing to do with why people are choosing how they do.
 
2012-12-16 11:20:02 AM  
Real baby. FOR LIFE!!

My tree is an organic object which provides a farmer a job, gives money to the highschool band selling them, and smells great in my home.

I drta but I'm assuming the pollution runoff from making plastic trees that will one day help support that giant garbage island of floating plastic in the Pacific makes fake trees not that great.
 
2012-12-16 11:20:04 AM  

Gortex: TFA was actually an interesting read. Where I'm from, (Nova Scotia), shipping Xmas trees to the US is a fairly big industry.


Thanks again for Boston's big tree. You guys rule.
 
2012-12-16 11:23:27 AM  

Fear the Clam: Gortex: TFA was actually an interesting read. Where I'm from, (Nova Scotia), shipping Xmas trees to the US is a fairly big industry.

Thanks again for Boston's big tree. You guys rule.


Least we can do for you guys (Boston) helping us dig out. We'll never forget.
 
2012-12-16 11:25:12 AM  
If someone would deliver and later pick back up a live tree- I would happily rent one for Christmas.
 
2012-12-16 11:27:27 AM  

Vangor: With a larger family, especially ones with young children, picking out, setting up, and decorating a real tree helps to observe Christmas.


We have no problem seeing Christmas without your traditions, druid.
 
2012-12-16 11:27:53 AM  

megalynn44: If someone would deliver and later pick back up a live tree- I would happily rent one for Christmas.

They do that here. A local nursery sells bundled root trees that they bring to your home and set up and after Christmas, the city comes and picks them up and plants them in local parks.
 
2012-12-16 11:29:04 AM  

megalynn44: If someone would deliver and later pick back up a live tree- I would happily rent one for Christmas.


One downside to an actual live tree (to be re-planted) is the limited amount of time they can be kept indoors. Too long and they start to come out of dormancy because of the temperature, and then die when placed back outside. That sort of negates the whole point, might as well have cut if down to start with. A lot of people like to keep the tree for much of the month and that's not possible with a whole tree. 5, maybe 7 days max.
 
2012-12-16 11:32:00 AM  

ramblinwreck: I don't know a single person that buys one to be "green." I have a fake one because I remember from my youth how much of a pain in the ass real ones were.


I've had the same one for 13 years now, and it still looks like a good fake tree. Easy to deal with, easy to decorate, easy to disassemble & store.
 
2012-12-16 11:36:25 AM  
I have a 2 foot tall plastic tree with fiber optic lights and Star Wars ornaments on my desk. But I did have to drag a real tree to my mom's house. WTF people deal with real trees, I'll never know.
 
2012-12-16 11:40:50 AM  

aimtastic: My parents used the same fake tree my entire life until I was about 35, and they bought it three years before I was born.

Turns out if you don't buy the cheapest fake tree you can find, it might last more than a small handful of years.


Honestly there is a tremendous difference betweenthe quality of your parents' ancient fake tree and the many many thousands of fake trees that are manufactured in China and shipped to the US every year.
 
2012-12-16 11:44:08 AM  

megalynn44: If someone would deliver and later pick back up a live tree- I would happily rent one for Christmas.


This is a genius idea.
 
2012-12-16 11:44:55 AM  
They don't mention the fossil fuels used driving millions of tons of trees around that will be discarded and burned few weeks later. As opposed to getting a box from the attic. Stupid advertisement for a local tree farm, with really weak attempt at an argument that mass production and subsequent burning of real trees is somehow better.
 
2012-12-16 11:46:16 AM  
Fake. Real ones are a huge pain in the ass, and it always bugged me that I have a huge piece of tinder in my house. Fake one has lasted for ten years now, and pretty much looks the same as when I got it.
 
2012-12-16 11:57:32 AM  
www.subspacecommunique.com
/no need for words...
 
2012-12-16 11:59:18 AM  

GORDON: There are more trees now in the USA than there were 100 years ago.

GLOBAL WARMING.


0/10. I am disappoint.
 
2012-12-16 12:14:15 PM  

BarkingUnicorn: ramblinwreck: I don't know a single person that buys one to be "green." I have a fake one because I remember from my youth how much of a pain in the ass real ones were.
You're not supposed to sit on them, dummy.


he may have had the same tradition in his family that we had--in order to be environmentally friendly, we had to cut up the tree after Christmas, compost it, and use it as toilet paper. Well, that worked for a few years, until we got smart and talked Mom into getting a fake tree.

Plus after we lost my little brother to a rattler in a the compost pile, Mom just wasn't as gung-ho about the whole thing.
 
2012-12-16 12:19:47 PM  
My 16" ceramic tree. It's probably 50 years old (it was in my grandparent's house growing up) and only uses a single light bulb. And you can put gift cards under it.

/going elsewhere for xmas events
 
2012-12-16 12:22:43 PM  

KarmicDisaster: we use one of those Charlie Brown trees.


real or fake?
 
2012-12-16 12:49:39 PM  

GORDON: There are more trees now in the USA than there were 100 years ago.

GLOBAL WARMING.


No, Smokey Bear...and not in a good way.
 
2012-12-16 01:20:31 PM  

megalynn44: If someone would deliver and later pick back up a live tree- I would happily rent one for Christmas.


Link
 
2012-12-16 01:20:39 PM  
I'd rather have a real tree but my wife has allergies. Also the tree people want more $$$ every year and always seem pretty shady.
 
2012-12-16 01:23:44 PM  
i.chzbgr.com
 
2012-12-16 01:25:06 PM  
The choice is a lot easier when you have a 26-acre Tree Farm of mixed conifers. We could give away 100 trees a year and not keep up with the thinning that needs to be done.
 
2012-12-16 01:31:58 PM  

Gough: GORDON: There are more trees now in the USA than there were 100 years ago.
GLOBAL WARMING.
No, Smokey Bear...and not in a good way.


Except the trees used to look like this:

www.scientificamerican.com

and now they look like this:

theharrisonstudio.net
 
2012-12-16 01:32:26 PM  
Real, kept watered so it's not a fire hazard, and cool LED lights that don't heat up. Support my local farmers, I also usually mulch up some of the smaller branches because I have super alkaline soil and pine is acid, then the city turns the big branches and trunk into mulch for city parks.

Win/Win/Win
 
2012-12-16 01:33:33 PM  
I environmentally go out with a bow saw and cut the top 8 feet off a healthy 25 ft tree.

Best bit is, if you get it in the week before Christmas, not a single needle drops before it is chopped up for kindling on the 5th of January...
 
2012-12-16 01:46:37 PM  

weapon13: abhorrent1: I don't pick fake to be environmentally friendly. I pick fake so I don't have to go out and buy one every year and clean up the mess.

Exactly.


Not to mention the fire hazard of stringing electrical wires all over a dead pine tree.
 
2012-12-16 01:52:18 PM  

senoy: I think the real lesson to be learned is that essentially people like to argue-- especially internet people. Is there a more inane topic than real vs. artificial Christmas trees? Reading these comments is like bizzaro world to me. Do you people really care that much or do you just want to say something? We've already diverged into religion and how holiday traditions are stupid. Wow, it just blows my mind. For the record, we have a live tree. My boys like to cut it down, the cat likes to climb it, the dog likes to drink the water, I like the smell and my wife likes the fact that it forces me to take down the decorations before February. My parents have artificial. It's easy, it looks good. It always fits their space. It leaves no mess and they don't have to worry about watering it. It's all good.


farm3.staticflickr.com
 
2012-12-16 02:01:01 PM  

Smackledorfer: kaseyfarksdaladies: Real or fake, it's a stupid tradition.

Decorating anything for any reason is stupid. fark aesthetics, am I right?


Well, there ought to be ways to decorate that don't involve gratuitous plant mutilation.
Just look at Halloween: harvest a pumpkin, grab a big knife. carve scary faces into it. Scoop out its guts. Put FIRE inside! Seems a little silly to me.
 
2012-12-16 02:18:24 PM  

MoparPower: Gortex: TFA was actually an interesting read. Where I'm from, (Nova Scotia), shipping Xmas trees to the US is a fairly big industry.

Red spruce is the only real Xmas tree!

Well I guess if that's all you can get it's close enough. Norway Spruce FTW.


Both wrong. Noble FirTW
 
2012-12-16 02:18:54 PM  
People pick fake trees because they're cheaper (over time) and less messy. It has absolutely nothing to do with being "environmentally friendly."

/real trees ftw
 
2012-12-16 02:44:11 PM  

dready zim: I environmentally go out with a bow saw and cut the top 8 feet off a healthy 25 ft tree.


really? every time i try this i find the tops have become pruned and straggly and very bent to the sun...

abhorrent1: Kimpak: Christmas tree bags. Check them out. .....
Still an all around pain in the ass. Drive to the lot, pick one, strap it to your car. drag it in the house etc. etc.... Plus having to spend $50 or more every year.
Got my fake one about 10 years ago for like $99. No annual cost and it takes me about 30 second to go out to the garage and get it when it's time to put it up.


...
We take a bow saw, wander into the bush and hike till we find a good looking tree. Then we cut it down, drag it out, toss it in the back of the truck and drive home. Black spruce works good (looses lots of needles) but my favorite is Balsam fir. Total cost: 0 dollars and 0 cents. And its Christmas tradition. We do it every year. Buying a tree - real or fake - is for chumps.

Drasancas: ... and then the CO2 is released again when the tree rots/burns. Or are you one of those people who keeps the tree alive and growing perpetually, for each tree for every year you get one?
The process that removes CO2 from the air and keeps it out is the one that produces petroleum/coal. Trees will lock it into solid form while they're alive.
... but to grow a tree, and then toss it out doesn't accomplish anything.


QFT. Thats not what happens. Growing trees absolutely forms a carbon sink. The CO2 takes allot longer to be released than it does to get absorbed and the plant itself is incredibly beneficial to the land it grows on. You are being incredibly disingenuous by claiming only petrification can sequester carbon.

Soil is capable of (and benefits from) containing huge amounts of carbon. Thing is most of the carbon in the dirt is unusable. You can increase the useable carbon by altering the chemistry of the soil (expensive and tough) or adding organic matter (cheap and relatively easy) --- fark -- im not going to write out the entire carbon cycle for you.

Trees grow and die just like any other plant we harvest. Nature is not fragile, its shockingly tough.
 
2012-12-16 02:45:36 PM  
Real only here. We go to a local tree farm guy. Pick one out, he cuts it off. $6/foot, so a 6 foot, perfectly formed tree is only $36.
And as it is absolutely fresh, it drops almost zero needles. Couple years ago, we put it outside and decorated it for Valentines Day.

Fake trees just look...fake. Sorry.
 
2012-12-16 02:54:25 PM  
I've never had a Christmas tree my entire life. When I was a kid, my mom used to hide the presents around the house on christmas eve while we were asleep and we had to wake up and race around and find them.

500 times more fun than a dumbass christmas tree with presents underneath. We were also told there was no santa claus from the age of 3 onward and the Real Meaning of Christmas TM, instead.
 
2012-12-16 03:00:20 PM  
Real tree: Grown on a farm, sprayed with fertilizers and pesticides, cut down and transported using car/truck that burned up a tonne of gasoline, stuck in someone's home for 2 months at most, fire hazard that gets sap all over everything, then is transported again using car/truck and fossil fuels, then releases the carbon when it rots/burns (mulcher uses gasoline too) every single year, unless you have the land/resources to keep its root ball on and plant it.

Fake tree: Lasts 20+ years, get from box in the basement/attic, vacuum up the odd green fleck, fire-resistant, ours is old and probably has lead, put back in box for next year, pretty sure that at least the metal inside could be recycled when my grandchildren wear it out someday.

I think in this case the pros of the fake tree outweighs the cons of a real tree.

This is not a stupid debate, its a good exercise in understanding what to analyze when someone claims something is 'better for the environment' and not some greenwashing marketing bs.
 
2012-12-16 03:02:34 PM  
I like artificial because:
1. easy setup
2. easy take down
3. no pitch mess
4. don't have to shop for one each year
5. NO BUGS RIDE IN WITH IT
6. don't have to water it
7. lights already strung

My gift to the environment: no mountain of baby diapers
 
2012-12-16 03:16:19 PM  

Chelle82: The only thing weirder than dragging a dying tree into your living room and worshipping it for several weeks is dragging a fake dying tree into your living room and worshipping it.

Plus I like the smell.


Tonight you will be visited by three spirits...
 
2012-12-16 03:18:37 PM  
My family always go real and at the end of the season, we haul it to the local boy scout troop where they recycle it. We never did like the fake ones.

One of the huge advantages I see with going real rather than fake is the variety of tree species you can select with real ones. When you buy a fake one, it's the same tree over and over again throughout the year. This year the family went with a blue spruce, and last year it was a noble fir. There is also even more species variety out there when selecting your tree to cut. Granted yes it all boils down to aesthetics but I like choice and picking out the tree my family will enjoy this year.

Next year I I'm thinking Turkish Fir.
 
2012-12-16 03:25:52 PM  
My mom swapped from real to fake trees probably 8 to 10 years ago because there were a few years in a row where it was a giant pain to find a tree that was between 7 and 9 feet tall that had lots of nice straight branches (as opposed to ones pointing up like.. I think Douglass Fir?) and lots of room between said branches. She has a huge collection of glass ornaments and wants to be able to display them -- fake trees don't fight back if you decide a branch should be pointing a slightly different direction. I still think we should buy a natural wreath or something and put it somewhere in the room to give off the nice tree smell though. Theoretically they're getting a new one that's pre-lit for next year.
 
2012-12-16 03:26:52 PM  

nickerj1: I've never had a Christmas tree my entire life. When I was a kid, my mom used to hide the presents around the house on christmas eve while we were asleep and we had to wake up and race around and find them.

500 times more fun than a dumbass christmas tree with presents underneath. We were also told there was no santa claus from the age of 3 onward and the Real Meaning of Christmas TM, instead.


That sounds like a nice version of the holiday, but I don't get the hostility towards "dumbass" trees. Whatev
 
2012-12-16 03:35:48 PM  

SinisterDexter: KarmicDisaster: we use one of those Charlie Brown trees.

real or fake?


Ok, you got me, it is fake. However it does contain only one ornament and has probably 1/1000 the material of a "real fake" tree. It is the sincere "before fix up" version.
 
2012-12-16 04:24:55 PM  

Rich Cream: Not friendly to environment but friendly to the living tree. That tree has been growing for over ten years just so you can cut it down, decorate it's carcass and pretend you have a functional family for a couple weeks.


this!
 
2012-12-16 04:40:07 PM  

elleeffe: Rich Cream: Not friendly to environment but friendly to the living tree. That tree has been growing for over ten years just so you can cut it down, decorate it's carcass and pretend you have a functional family for a couple weeks.

this!


Trees die. They dont experience pain... You know it took months for those tomatoes on your sandwich to grow... And it took the better part of a summer for an entire field of grain to grow...

Properly harvested trees are no different than any other plant.
 
2012-12-16 04:46:24 PM  

mikefinch: They dont experience pain



They react to harm. How is that different?
 
2012-12-16 05:14:50 PM  

mikefinch: Trees die. They dont experience pain... You know it took months for those tomatoes on your sandwich to grow... And it took the better part of a summer for an entire field of grain to grow...


I don't really have a point here, but you reminded me of episode 7 of Long Way 'Round (Road of Bones). Ewan McGregor was expressing "disgust" at the truckers who stopped to shoot a black bear. (The pelt was worth a fair bit; the meat was abandoned. For some reason, they mentioned the meat was poisonous? That bit didn't make sense.) Because, you know, it's a bear and... well... because.

Not two minutes later, Ewan insisted upon hacking down a tree by hand to fill a sinkhole in the road... for the experience of doing it.

I know. Bear tree, but it struck me as a sort of hypocrisy all the same.
 
2012-12-16 05:16:39 PM  

MooseUpNorth: I know. Bear != tree, but it struck me as a sort of hypocrisy all the same.


/ FTFM.
 
2012-12-16 05:47:34 PM  

MooseUpNorth: (The pelt was worth a fair bit; the meat was abandoned. For some reason, they mentioned the meat was poisonous? That bit didn't make sense.)


Bear meat isn't poisonous but it is pretty unpalatable to allot of people. The only people i know who eat it are really old native dudes living on the res.
 
2012-12-16 05:52:40 PM  

mikefinch: MooseUpNorth: (The pelt was worth a fair bit; the meat was abandoned. For some reason, they mentioned the meat was poisonous? That bit didn't make sense.)

Bear meat isn't poisonous but it is pretty unpalatable to allot of people. The only people i know who eat it are really old native dudes living on the res.


'Poisonous' was a direct quote from the show, though. (Although it could have been a problem in translation.)
 
2012-12-16 07:37:52 PM  
I have a 20 foot Scot's pine in front of my house. I have to prune it regularly. I do so in mid-December and festoon my mantel with the trimmings, adding "Candela" battery operated candles and a few old ornaments that escaped the great FSM purge of 2010. Then, in mid-January, said trimmings go out in the compost bin.
 
2012-12-16 08:55:47 PM  
Actual footage of a Christmas tree that was too dry....

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-12-16 11:06:06 PM  
Subby Troll score = 9/10
 
2012-12-17 12:47:07 AM  
Convert to Judaism, then you only have to burn 2 candles a week and a menorah in an 8 day period. It's environmentally friendlier than cutting down a tree or dealing with the industrial process of plastic trees.
 
2012-12-17 10:21:11 AM  
The fake tree with the lights built into it is Santa's greatest invention. I hate stringing lights on a tree.
 
2012-12-17 10:23:47 AM  

Hermione_Granger: I disagree. My mom bought a fake tree when I turned 15. She used that tree for years until I moved back home. Then we used my fake tree which I bought when my daughter was 5 and we still use now she's 20. My mom's old tree is in use at church every winter to hold hat, glove and scarf donations. Two fake trees with well over 30 years use between them and will probably be used for decades more. How is this enviornmentally unfriendly?


Because, to remain under their control, the snake-oil salesmen need you to remain in a state of panic, even after the previous problems are solved. AGW is the perfect means of doing this, as by redefining carbon dioxide and natural gas from "environmentally safe alternatives" to "earth-killing toxins" and back again, they can keep people paying for the privilege of chasing after the Carrot That Will Save The World forever.
 
2012-12-17 10:26:44 AM  

mike_d85: You mean that 8-foot tall, 4 time use piece of metal and plastic isn't environmentally freindly?

I thought not planting hundreds of pine trees that would grow faster because of their youth and absorb significant amounts of carbon from the air was a good thing.


Oddly enough I've only ever seen one Christmas tree, because my parents have had the same one for about 40 years.
 
2012-12-17 10:43:53 AM  

MooseUpNorth: mikefinch: MooseUpNorth: (The pelt was worth a fair bit; the meat was abandoned. For some reason, they mentioned the meat was poisonous? That bit didn't make sense.)

Bear meat isn't poisonous but it is pretty unpalatable to allot of people. The only people i know who eat it are really old native dudes living on the res.

'Poisonous' was a direct quote from the show, though. (Although it could have been a problem in translation.)


Wild omnivore meat is much more likely to be toxic, even after being cooked, than wild predator meat, which in turn is more likely to be toxic than wild herbivore/insectivore meat. It's pretty well-known that the higher up on the food chain you get your meat, the more toxic the meat is likely to be, because toxins eaten by one creature linger and are gathered and concentrated in the bodies of the creatures that manage to kill and eat them.

It's a discrete random chance, though. It's not a matter of "bear meat is 40% toxic, so you get 40% sicker every time you eat it." Instead, it's "40% of bears have toxic meat, so you might get sick and die with the first one you eat, or you might eat dozens and never get sick, but the more you eat, the more likely you will get sick from it."

/and, like The Devil's Drinking Game, there's no guarantee the toxin will take effect right away
//only way to reduce your chances of getting poisoned to acceptably close to zero is to carefully manage the entire food chain up to the stage you harvest
 
2012-12-17 10:44:18 AM  

Nuclear Monk: I'm watching my decorated real tree not take up any water, so I'm getting a real kick....from the anticipation of the huge bonfire that will be my living room in a week or so.


Try using metal foil and hanging ornaments instead of electric lights and stuff that produces heat.
 
2012-12-17 12:10:23 PM  
Came for the fire references and will leave satisfied. Gather 'round, let's all hear a cool story (bro) from Uncle Earl on the subject of live Christmas trees.

About 8 years ago, when the Green's had just moved into their current house, Mrs. Green and I set up our usual Christmas display for the young'ins. Nothing too elaborate, nothing outside, just tasteful and reserved with the pine scent of our real tree filling the air with holiday joy. A lovely Christmas was had by all. Uncle Earl even got what he wanted that year, a new fire pit to enjoy our new big backyard. So come early January, it seemed like a good idea to test the fire pit for functionality. And what better way to test it than with 1 used Christmas tree? So off we went into the big backyard with the former centerpiece of our Christmas Day. Fortunately for all involved, your Uncle Earl had enough caution to place the fire pit about 80 feet from any structure. The tree, after shedding needles throughout the house on the way out, was lovingly placed in the rust-free fire pit and Uncle Earl delicately touched ONE pine needle with a lighted cigarette. Within 15 seconds, the tree had become fully engulfed (featuring a mini mushroom cloud). 5 seconds later, flaming pine needles began ascending into the air and landing, still burning, wherever the wind took them (the ground was snow-covered that day, which made it just a demonstration instead of an accident). 35 seconds in, the fire was so hot that it was unapproachable. 5 minutes in, everything was ashes. 20 minutes earlier, that thing had been in our living room (yeah, in water). The Green's have now gone artificial with the bonus of storing it fully decorated for easy assembly the following year.

You're welcome bro, I know it's a cool story.

Live trees are a ridiculous fire trap that leave you lucky if you found the cats before you had to evacuate.
 
2012-12-17 01:26:38 PM  
Fake. Pretty much what everyone else has said is great about going fake. The big plus is we can put it up on Thanksgiving weekend and take it down whenever we feel like after Christmas without worrying our house will catch on fire. The tree we have was inherited from the MIL and is probably over 15 years old. It was a pre-lit, but the wires have since gone bad. Each year I consider buying a new one with more realistic branches and LED lights, but there's no extensive warranty that will guarantee I wont have to string up lights on it after the wiring goes bad. So we just keep the old one. I'm considering just removing the old lights since they can get in the way.

The wife is all for the fake and only wishes for the smell a real one puts out. That's fixed with a scented candle or the scented "smoke" fluid for the train.

/Would love to meet a fireman that has a real Christmas tree in their house.
 
2012-12-17 04:17:50 PM  

Tatterdemalian: MooseUpNorth: mikefinch: MooseUpNorth: (The pelt was worth a fair bit; the meat was abandoned. For some reason, they mentioned the meat was poisonous? That bit didn't make sense.)

Bear meat isn't poisonous but it is pretty unpalatable to allot of people. The only people i know who eat it are really old native dudes living on the res.

'Poisonous' was a direct quote from the show, though. (Although it could have been a problem in translation.)

Wild omnivore meat is much more likely to be toxic, even after being cooked, than wild predator meat, which in turn is more likely to be toxic than wild herbivore/insectivore meat. It's pretty well-known that the higher up on the food chain you get your meat, the more toxic the meat is likely to be, because toxins eaten by one creature linger and are gathered and concentrated in the bodies of the creatures that manage to kill and eat them.

It's a discrete random chance, though. It's not a matter of "bear meat is 40% toxic, so you get 40% sicker every time you eat it." Instead, it's "40% of bears have toxic meat, so you might get sick and die with the first one you eat, or you might eat dozens and never get sick, but the more you eat, the more likely you will get sick from it."

/and, like The Devil's Drinking Game, there's no guarantee the toxin will take effect right away
//only way to reduce your chances of getting poisoned to acceptably close to zero is to carefully manage the entire food chain up to the stage you harvest


Interesting. Why is omnivore worse than carnivore though?
 
2012-12-17 05:07:15 PM  

Tatterdemalian: Wild omnivore meat is much more likely to be toxic[...]


That makes sense. I'd forgotten the omnivore angle.

Smackledorfer: Interesting. Why is omnivore worse than carnivore though?


I'm guessing more distinct sources of food means more distinct vectors for disease/parasite propagation. I'd also hazard the guess that since black bears scavenge, they're exposed to whatever it was that killed their meal. If there's a parasite particularly rampant in the Russian far east, black bears would almost certainly among the carriers.
 
2012-12-17 05:28:38 PM  

MooseUpNorth: I'd also hazard the guess that since black bears scavenge, they're exposed to whatever it was that killed their meal.


Black bears will eat terrible things. An empty jerry can for instance because it smelled like gasoline... Or anything rotten -- Like a rank beaver thats been dead for a week. Or just anything even slightly smelling interesting. Like shaving cream.
 
2012-12-17 05:30:55 PM  

Smackledorfer: Interesting. Why is omnivore worse than carnivore though?


Because the key factor in changing the odds of absorbing and building up a concentration of toxins is to have a widely varied diet that involves consuming a variety of other life forms. Herbivore prey is sessile, causing herbovores to develop instincts to prefer to browse plants in one fixed locality, reducing their odds of exposure to toxins unless some natural disaster or change in vegetable migratory barriers happens to dump a pile on their pasture that the plants somehow absorb. Carnivores, on the other hand, have to run down and kill unwilling prey, forcing them to be nomadic and less picky about what they prey on, as well as operationg on a higher tier of the food chain. Omnivores get the worst of both cases when their diet isn't carefully managed, and thus the highest chance that something in the chain of prey contained an accumulation of lead, arsenic, or mercury that they build up in turn.

In short, when it comes to the nastier toxins, you not only are what you eat, you are everything anything you ate ever ate. This even affects insects, though their degree of evolutionary specialization lets some use this to their advantage, like how monarch butterflies store up the toxin they absorb from mulberry leaves they eat as caterpillars, rendering them lethally poisonous and generally resistant to predation in spite of their lack of camoflage.

/and this is also the reason omnivorous diets are pretty strongly selected against in nature, in spite of their apparent advantages
//lucky for us we have really big livers, relative to our body mass
 
2012-12-18 12:22:54 AM  
Thanks.

I knew about the build up and all, I'd just never read that omnivores are the worst. Guess I should stop canabilism from now on. For my health.
 
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