Photo courtesy of David Cappaert,
Michigan State University, Bugwood.org.
New Hampshire officials confirmed on Friday, April 5, that emerald ash borer (EAB), an invasive wood boring beetle that attacks and kills ash trees, has been found in the state.
Specimens from a suspect tree in Concord were collected and sent to scientists at the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, which confirmed the insect's identity.
EAB is native to China and eastern Asia. Since its first U.S. detection in Michigan more than 10 years ago, EAB has been responsible for the decline or death of tens of millions of U.S. ash trees. The interstate movement of firewood from quarantine areas is an especially high-risk pathway for spreading EAB. According to the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture, EAB now occurs in 19 states and two Canadian provinces. The finding in Concord is the easternmost detection in North America. It was detected in Western Massachusetts last summer.
"Early detection of EAB is critical," says Tchukki Andersen, BCMA, CTSP* and staff arborist with the Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA), based in Londonderry, N.H. "Our trees are being threatened by this exotic, invasive pest. As New Hampshire residents, we must do our part to control the spread of this pest."
Here are some tips to identifying EAB:
- Adult beetles are roughly 3/8 to 5/8 inch long and bright green.
- Adult emergence usually begins in early June, peaks in late June and early July, and continues into late July. Beetles usually live for about three weeks and are present into mid-August.
- Adult beetles are active during the day, particularly when conditions are warm and sunny.
- Beetles feed on ash foliage, usually in small, irregularly-shaped patches along the margins of leaves.
- Jagged holes excavated by woodpeckers feeding on pre-pupal larvae may be the first sign that a tree has become infested.
Citizens are encouraged to report suspect ash trees to 1-800-444-8978 or www.nhbugs.org.
Healthy ash trees can be saved with proper treatments. If you elect to treat your trees, there are several insecticide options available. A professional arborist can examine your ash trees for EAB and recommend treatments, if necessary. An easy way to find a tree care service provider in your area is to use the "Locate Your Local TCIA Member Companies" program. You can use this service by calling 1-800-733-2622 or by doing a ZIP Code search on www.treecaretips.org