KIMT NEWS 3 – The Emerald Ash Borer insect has been positively identified in Iowa. It’s an invasive beetle that could potentially cause the destruction of thousands of ash trees, if they spread to other parts of the state.
The Emerald Ash Borer, also known as EAB, has been detected in a residential tree in Burlington, Iowa.
The last time we saw this beetle was back in 2010 and it is now being considered one of the most destructive forest pests in North America.
It’s a little green beetle that kills ash tree species by burrowing under the bark and eating the actively growing layers of the tree.
Local ag experts say there has only been one case confirmed and folks with ash tree’s don’t need to worry unless the beetle has been found within 15 miles of their town.
EAB is a native to Asia and most likely came to North America via infested firewood and other plants.
Because of that it’s important to take extra precautions when it comes to your own firewood.
Iowa State University Extension Program Director, Rick Pleggenkuhle said, “If you have firewood that you cut yourself it is reccommended locally to not move firewood outside county lines if at all possible and if you’re going to burn local firewood please do it locally.”
Rick mentioned there are ways to protect your tree’s if the beetle is found within 15 miles of your home, involving a special injection underneath the bark.
According to the USDA Forest Service, Iowa has an estimated 52 million ash trees – more than 3 million in urban areas.