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MDC: Emerald ash borer reported in 89 counties

The borer is a small, metallic green, invasive beetle from Asia.
The borer is a small, metallic green, invasive beetle from Asia.(WVIR)
Updated: Jun. 9, 2021 at 4:43 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, the emerald ash borer (EAB) has been reported in 89 counties.

The borer is a small, metallic green, invasive beetle from Asia.

It attacks all species of ash trees and kills 99% of them.

Ash trees usually show a pattern of declining health two to four years before EABs kill them.

Signs that indicate EAB presence include woodpecker damage, sprouts growing from the main trunk, and major branch loss.

“Landowners often notice woodpecker damage on their ash during the winter months — typically the first sign of EAB in an area,” said MDC Forest Entomologist Robbie Doerhoff. “By the time you notice this type of damage, it is generally too late to save your tree with insecticides.”

Ash tree owners can protect their trees with insecticides.

“If you have a live ash tree in your yard and you’d like to see it stay that way, now is the time to treat it with an insecticide,” said Doerhoff. “Not all products will protect your tree from EAB, so it’s important to understand your options when it comes to this pest.”

Once EAB becomes established in a new area and wintertime woodpecker damage becomes evident, most local ash trees will be dead within a few short years.

“Dying or dead ash become very brittle and should be removed promptly if they pose a threat to people or property,” said Doerhoff.

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