Emerald Ash Borer Homeowners’ Guide

emerald ash borer

Untreated vs. treated tree

The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a threat to all Ash trees. Nevertheless, while this invasive species related to the beetle is highly invasive and aggressive, it can be spotted, prevented and even treated in many cases.

Particularly if you catch an EAB infestation at a reasonably early stage and work proactively, there may be a chance of saving the Ash trees on your property.

As mighty as an Ash tree may appear, it can be brought down surprisingly easily by these tiny but incredibly dangerous little insects.

Just take a look at the photo to the right, which features one tree that was treated for EAB infestation and one that wasn’t, to get a sense of the level of destruction these pests are capable of causing.

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First Documented Emerald Ash Borer Infestation in Warrington PA

Here are some pictures of Ash trees I took in 2012.  These trees were found to be infested by Emerald Ash Borer (EAB). The location was the Hampton Greens Condominiums in Warrington, Bucks County. This was the first documented case of Emerald Ash Borer in our area.

There were thousands of D-shaped exit wounds where the females emerged to either lay more eggs further down the tree, or fly off to other Ash trees and lay eggs in the tops of those trees. It was estimated that these trees had suffered three years of activity by the time these pictures were taken. They were cut down soon after.

First Infestation of Emerald Ash Borer in Warrington PA - 2012 Emerald Ash Borer Warrington PA - thousands of D shaped exit wounds where the females emerged to either lay more eggs further down the tree, or fly off to other Ash trees and lay eggs in the tops of those trees. Emerald Ash Borer Warrington PA - location was the Hampton Greens Condominiums in Warrington, Bucks County. Emerald Ash Borer Warrington PA - trees suffered three years of activity by the time these pictures were taken.

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The Ash Tree: An Endangered Species

How to Protect Your Trees from the Threat of the Emerald Ash Borer

Emerald Ash Borer

The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a classic example of how invasive species thrive. This tiny green beetle is native to Asia and wasn’t seen in the United States until 2002, when it was discovered by Michigan foresters.

Research indicates that the beetle was mistakenly introduced to the country via shipping materials. Since then, the flying green beetles have spread east, including into the state of Pennsylvania. Its presence was documented in Warrington, PA in the spring of 2012, and it has since spread throughout the Bucks County and Montgomery County areas.

At this point, it is believed that these insects are now in our local wood products, such as mulch and wood chips, and are expected to continue to spread rapidly. The Emerald Ash Borer feed on Ash trees, where they lay their eggs in bark crevices. And unfortunately, if something isn’t done about these destructive pests soon, there won’t be any Ash trees left.

EAB has already been responsible for the loss of millions of Ash trees in North America, and at the current rate, there’s every reason to imagine that the Emerald Ash Borer could cause the Ash tree to become an extinct species.

If you have Ash trees on your property, it’s time to meet with a certified arborist to discuss your options.

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