Thursday, July 12, 2007

Emerald ash borer found in LaSalle County

July 11, 2007 SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - The tree-killing emerald ash borer has been found in LaSalle County, the Illinois Department of Agriculture announced Wednesday.
The small metallic-green beetles and their larvae were found in ash trees just north of Peru at the cloverleaf intersection of Interstate 80 and Illinois Route 251, the department said.
"Our staff now is surveying ash trees in the surrounding area to define the size of the infestation," Agriculture Director Chuck Hartke said in a statement.
The larvae of the emerald ash borer, a native of Asia, kill ash trees by burrowing into their bark. The invasive insect has killed an estimated 20 million ash trees since it was first confirmed in the Midwest in the summer of 2002.
The beetles were first spotted in Illinois in June 2006 in rural Kane County. They since have been found in the northern Cook County communities of Wilmette, Evanston, Winnetka, and Skokie.
Hartke said the department has imposed a quarantine in parts of five counties to stop the movement of ash wood and live ash trees or saplings out of infested areas. It also is removing infested trees at no expense to homeowners and making a comprehensive survey of ash trees in northeastern Illinois, he said.


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