Emerald Ash Borer
Officials with the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) and the Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR) announced that the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) has been detected in Massachusetts. The destructive beetle was detected in the western Massachusetts town of Dalton on August 31, 2012, and was confirmed by federal officials on September 6. Massachusetts is the 18th state in the country to detect EAB. EAB has not been detected outside the town of Dalton. However, officials have urged all residents in Massachusetts to be alert for any sign of this invasive species.
The EAB is a small, flying beetle, native to Asia. It was first discovered in North America in 2002, in the Detroit, Michigan area. Unlike other invasive beetles, the EAB can kill a tree fast, within just a few years, because it bores directly under the bark, where the tree’s conductive system is. Since its discovery in North America, it has killed millions of ash trees and has caused billions of dollars in economic loss across the nation.
Ash is a main component of the Northern Hardwood forest in Massachusetts and is a common species in the Berkshires. Ash is also a common street tree in eastern Massachusetts.
Signs of EAB
Residents are urged to take the time to learn the signs of EAB tree damage and be sure to report any sightings.
• Look for tiny, D-shaped exit holes in the bark of ash trees, die-back in the upper third of the tree canopy, and sprouting of branches just below this dead area.
• The Emerald ash borer is a tiny, emerald-green metallic beetle, so small that seven of them could fit on the head of a penny.
To report suspicious tree damage or insect sightings, or to learn more about this pest, visit www.massnrc.org/pests. You can also call the toll free EAB hotline at 1-866-322-4512.
More information about EAB: http://emeraldashborer.info
Stopping the spread of EAB
DCR and DAR officials are working together, in collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the USDA’s United States Forest Service to take a number of swift proactive steps aimed at preventing the spread of the invasive beetle, including:
Regulated items that would fall under quarantine include the following:
• The Emerald ash borer, in any living stage of development;
• Firewood of all hardwood species;
• Nursery stock of the genus (Ash);
• Green lumber of the genus (Ash);
• Other material living, dead, cut, or fallen, including logs, stumps, roots, branches, and composted and uncomposted chips of the genus (Ash);
• Any other article, product, or means of conveyance that an inspector determines presents a risk of spreading Emerald ash borer and notifies the person in possession of the article, product, or means of conveyance that it is subject to the restrictions of the regulations.
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