Emerald ash borer found in Waseca County

Published 5:08 pm Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Emergency quarantine on wood movement put in place

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has confirmed the presence of emerald ash borer in Waseca County for the first time. There are now 32 counties in the state with EAB.

A local Department of Natural Resources forester noticed woodpecker damage on several ash trees in Janesville and alerted the MDA. MDA staff were able to find live EAB larvae and collect samples. Federal identification confirmed emerald ash borer.

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. Often, the trees show several signs of infestation because of this. Woodpeckers like to feed on EAB larvae and woodpecker holes, like the ones spotted by DNR staff, may indicate the presence of emerald ash borer. Also, EAB tunneling can cause the bark to split open, revealing characteristic S-shaped galleries underneath.

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Because this is the first time EAB has been identified in Waseca County, the MDA is enacting an emergency quarantine to limit the movement of firewood and ash material out of the county. The MDA issues quarantines for all counties known to have EAB to reduce the risk of further spreading the tree-killing insect.

Virtual informational meetings for residents and tree care professionals will be held on April 19. Experts from the MDA will give a brief presentation followed by a question-and-answer session.