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Emerald Ash Boring Beetle, The Green Menace

Emerald Ash Borer, The Green Menace

January 9th, 2008/Updated September 21, 2008

Sunset Lakes Resort will no longer allow outside firewood to be brought into the grounds due to the Emerald Ash Borer, a beetle that kills ash trees. Please help us in our endeavor to save hundreds of trees on our grounds. The terms of our policy are being determined as of the date of this article. Please check back for future updates.

Please read below for details on this emerging story. Please aid us in our effort to protect our trees, your trees, and the next generations trees.

  • USDA information: www.aphis.usda.gov 1-866-322-4512
  • Forest Service: http://na.fs.fed.us/fhp/eab/
  • Additional Info: www.emeraldashborer.info

What It is, where It came from, and what It does

According to a pamphlet distributed by the USDA, the Emerald Ash Boring Beetle (EAB) was detected in 2002, and the scientific community estimates it was introduced into North America from China and eastern Asia, its native land, sometime around 1990. This beetle is responsible for the death or decline of nearly 15 million ash trees in just a 20-county area around Detroit! Canadian officials estimate that up to 200,000 ash trees are infested and will die in Essex.

The EAB will spread naturally around a 1/2 mile each year. Humans are responsible for further spread, and thus the widespread destruction across North America. Ash tree limbs, bark, wood, or wood chips can contain the larvae or the beetle, and moving those will spread the contamination.

Scientists have discovered that the beetle can develop from an egg to an adult in one year. From May to August adults emerge from overwintering sites under bark, and mate. Females lay eggs in the bark crevices and the eggs hatch in about ten days. The eggs develop into worm like larvae and tunnel under the bark to feed, grow and eventually emerge from the trees the following May as adults. During the winter they lay dormant under the bark, but by then, the destruction is done. The fate of the ash is sealed, it will die.

Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Facts according to the USDA:

  • On this continent, EAB attacks only ash trees (Fraxinus spp.), and all the ashes except for the mountain ash (which is not a true ash).
  • EAB is a good flyer but tends to fly only relatively short distances (about 1/2 mile).
  • We cannot count on natural predatation to control EAB: the beetle has no known predators in North America, although woodpeckers will eat them.
  • EAB infestation is always fatal to ash trees. Infested trees will decline from the top down and will be dead in 1 to 3 years, even if the trees were healthy before being attacked by EAB.
  • EAB is under a great deal of scientific scrutiny now. New information and discoveries will improve managers ability to detect, control, and eradicate the beetle.

What can Campers do? Cooperate!

Federal and state governments, municipalities, universities, and the greening industry are all working together to educate one another and the public on how to slow the spread. Here are some tips:
  1. Don’t move firewood. Humans unknowingly contribute to the spread of EAB when they move firewood. EAB can survive hidden under the bark of firewood.
  2. Visually inspect your trees. Early detection is a key factor. If trees show a sign or sypmtom of EAB infestation, contact your State agricultural agency. Visit www.aphis.usda.gov for signs and symptoms.
  3. Spread the word. Talk to fellow campers, your friends, neighbors and coworkers. Support the public education effort.
  4. Know State and Federal regulations. Did you know there are county, state and federal quarantines?
  5. Ask questions. If you receive ash nursery stock, know its point of origin. EAB larvae may be hiding under the bark.
The above information was taken from the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Inspection Service, program aid No. 1769 titled Emerald Ash Borer The Green Menace

jm 1-9-08/jm 9-21-08