Friday, March 20, 2009

Emerald Ash Borer found in Glen Ellyn

From the Daily Herald~

Glen Ellyn is the latest town to be hit with the unwanted arrival of the emerald ash borer at a time when it has no funds to fight the bug.

The infestation of the green, nonnative pest was confirmed Monday at two separate locations - on Whittier Avenue and Stagecoach Court - by the Illinois Department of Agriculture, according to Joe Caracci, public works director.

The bug's larvae eat through ash trees, cutting off nutrients and eventually killing them. Roughly 12 percent - or 1,850 - of the village's parkway trees are ash, according to the public works department. The village has no data on the number of private ash trees in town.

"It can really get out of control," Caracci said of the infestation.

The news comes at a time when the village already is dealing with a reduced forestry budget.

Originally, the budget was supposed to include $40,000 for removal of some ash trees and replacement of others. That was one of the first things cut when the board was trimming a $2.6 million deficit because, at the time, the village was not aware of any emerald ash borer in its trees.

The budget still contains $5,000 in chemical applications to combat the insect.

Caracci said he'll be spending time coming up with a plan to fight the bugs, but that could mean other forestry programs, such as tree replacement, take a hit.

"We want to do research into chemical treatments and what other communities have been successful with," he said.

He said the village likely will take an approach that lies between spending a lot of money to take down trees or waiting until more are infested and hazardous.

It also will be up to the board to figure out if it wants to enact an ordinance that would require property owners to remove private infested ash trees.

Once a plan of attack is decided on, residents will be notified through the village Web site and newsletter.

For now, residents who are worried about their own ash trees should consult an arborist. If an infestation is found, residents should call public works at (630) 469-6756.


Related Posts with Thumbnails