Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) The emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis) is an exotic invasive insect pest native to Asia. It is now considered the most serious pest of ash trees in North America. Since it was first detected in southeastern Michigan and Windsor, Ontario in 2002, it has spread to 15 Midwestern and eastern states and 2 Canadian Provinces. So far, this pest has been responsible for killing at least 50 million ash trees. Incredibly, EAB has killed more than 99% of the ash trees growing in southeastern Michigan. In Pennsylvania, this insect has been detected in 28 counties – in March 2012, EAB was detected in Warrington Township in nearby Bucks County. As shown in this photo, this pest is a small (8.5 mm or about ¼ inch), metallic green, flat-headed borer with an elongated body (Photo: Howard Russell, Michigan State University, Bugwood.org). This insect is small but destructive.
All species of ash (Fraxinus spp.) trees are vulnerable to EAB attack. The damage is caused by EAB larvae feeding within their S-shaped galleries in the inner bark, the phloem tissue that transports nutrients and water throughout the tree. This damage from the larval feeding galleries shuts off the transport of nutrients and water, eventually killing the tree within three years.
We have plenty of ash trees throughout Hanover Township. Several neighborhoods are especially vulnerable to EAB because most of their street trees are ash, including 4701-4783 Kathi Drive, Toni Lane, and a portion of Loraine Lane.
For up-to-date information and factsheets on EAB identification and damage, ash tree identification, and a homeowner’s guide to treatment, please visit the Emerald Ash Borer website developed by Penn State Extension. You may want to begin with these fact sheets:
Other helpful websites:
- If you suspect emerald ash borer infestation, a wood sample enclosed tightly in a plastic bag can be taken to the Penn State Extension office in either Lehigh County or Northampton County for confirmation.
- Remember: Do Not Move Firewood! Exotic pests like the EAB are easily transported to new uninfested areas by hitchhiking in firewood.
Please use locally harvested firewood
- Do not bring firewood into PA – this is banned by quarantine
- If you already moved firewood, do not take it home – do not leave it – BURN IT!