You might not know the Wanaka Tree by name, but there is a very good chance you have seen the iconic willow tree before. Sadly, vandals recently attacked the famous tree with a saw, mangling its natural beauty.
The tree, located in Wanaka, New Zealand, has been the subject of countless photos, with its lowest branch elegantly gracing the surface of Lake Wanaka against a mountain background. Sadly, vandals recently attacked the tree with a saw, chopping off many branches, including the beautiful lower branch. Photographer Luisa Apanui arrived at the lake earlier this week for a shoot and discovered the cut branches on the shore nearby.
It is a truly sad loss, as the tree was one of the most recognizable and beautiful natural elements on the planet. Tree branches rarely regrown if cut, and even if the tree regrows the cut branches, it is highly unlikely that they will grow in a similar path as the originals, meaning it is unlikely the tree will ever fully reestablish its iconic look after the senseless act.
There have been no motives or leads established, and Wanaka Police are asking anyone with information to contact them.
Lead image by Stephane Pakula, used under Creative Commons.