(The following information is modified from a Minnesota Department of Agriculture news release).
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has placed Dodge County under an emergency quarantine after emerald ash borer (EAB) was found in the city of Kasson last week. Kasson is about 13 miles west of the nearest known EAB infestation in Rochester (Olmstead County). The EAB was found in a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) trap. MDA staff has since conducted a search of the area and discovered an EAB infested tree.
|Emerald ash borer was found for the first time in Dodge|
county, caught on a trap. Photo: Jeff Hahn, U of M Extension
Because this is the first time EAB has been identified in Dodge County, the MDA is enacting an emergency quarantine to limit the movement of firewood and ash material out of the county. This will reduce the risk of further spreading the tree-killing insect. Currently 12 other Minnesota counties and Park Point in the city of Duluth are under quarantine to prevent the spread of the emerald ash borer.
The biggest risk of spreading EAB comes from people unknowingly moving firewood or other ash products harboring larvae. Take these three easy steps to keep EAB from spreading:
• Don’t transport firewood. Buy firewood locally from approved vendors, and burn it where you buy it;
• Be aware of the quarantine restrictions. If you live in a quarantined county, be aware of the restrictions on movement of products such as ash trees, wood chips, and firewood; and,
• Watch your ash trees for infestation. If you think your ash tree is infested, go to www.mda.state.mn.us/eab and use the “Do I Have Emerald Ash Borer?” guide.
Emerald ash borer larvae kill ash trees by tunneling under the bark and feeding on the part of the tree that moves nutrients up and down the trunk. Since its accidental introduction into North America, EAB has killed tens of millions of ash trees in 24 states. The invasive insect was first discovered in Minnesota in 2009. Minnesota is highly susceptible to EAB as the state has nearly one billion ash trees.
For more information on EAB, see Emerald ash borer in Minnesota. Go here for the original MDA news release.