Experts: Devastation of Missouri ice storm will heal over time

Friday, February 13, 2009 | 4:55 p.m. CST; updated 5:04 p.m. CST, Friday, February 13, 2009

ST. LOUIS — The ice storm that ravaged southern Missouri in late January devastated thousands of trees and hurt wildlife. But conservation officials say the mess should heal itself over time.

Forest managers say the Jan. 26 to 27 ice storm clobbered woodlands, coating trees with an icy weight that weakened them, broke off their limbs and branches, and made them more susceptible to disease. Many won't survive.

Wildlife biologists say the storm also hurt certain creatures that couldn't feed for days or that now find themselves more exposed.

A group of mourning doves near Kennett lost their tail feathers, which had frozen to their roost.

But as damaging an event as the storm was, experts say nature will heal itself over time.


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