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Another Iowa county reports destructive pest emerald ash borer

Emerald ash borer adult. Photo by David Cappaert, Michigan State University,
Emerald ash borer adult. Photo by David Cappaert, Michigan State University,

DES MOINES – A highly-destructive small green invasive wood boring beetle that attacks and kills ash trees has now been reported in another Iowa county, bringing the running total to 9.

Officials with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources said Friday that emerald ash borer (EAB) has been positively identified in a residential tree in Newton in Jasper County from a larva sample collected on March 20. A citizen reported a suspect ash tree to city staff, who contacted the Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ forestry bureau to coordinate a sample collection.

EAB kills all ash tree species and is considered to be one of the most destructive tree pests in North America. Jasper County is the ninth Iowa county where EAB has been confirmed.

State officials will continue to track the movement of EAB. Before a county can be officially recognized as infested, an EAB must be collected and verified by USDA entomologists.

A statewide quarantine restricting the movement of hardwood firewood, ash logs, wood chips and ash tree nursery stock out of Iowa into non-quarantined areas of other states was issued on Feb. 4, 2014.

Emerald Ash Borer has been confirmed in Allamakee, Des Moines, Jefferson, Cedar, Union, Black Hawk, Wapello, Bremer and Jasper counties in Iowa. Even though Iowa has been quarantined statewide, Iowans are encouraged not to transport firewood across county or state lines, since moving firewood poses the greatest threat to quickly spreading EAB or possibly other pests even further.

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