Emerald Ash Borer confirmed in Boone County

Pest now has been found in 12 of Iowa's 99 counties

Scars made from a tunneling emerald ash borer is seen on a tree along Fleetwood Rd. SW on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014, in sout
Scars made from a tunneling emerald ash borer is seen on a tree along Fleetwood Rd. SW on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014, in southwest Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The tree is scheduled to be cut down as a result of the emerald ash borer. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette-KCRG)

Two adult emerald ash borer beetles collected from a trap in a residential tree in Boone have been positively identified.

The discovery makes Boone County the 12th of Iowa’s 99 counties with an infestation.

“As summer winds down, I would not be surprised if we see more infestations,” State Entomologist Robin Pruisner of the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship said Monday during a news conference.

Pruisner said members of the Iowa EAB Team are examining suspect trees on a daily basis.

In Boone, she said, the trap was placed in the tree this summer after suspect larva trails called galleries were found in an ash tree branch that fell during a storm.

“Boone has prepared well for this day,” she said.

City Administrator Luke Nelson said Boone has inventoried all of its street trees and has been removing ash trees judged not to be in good condition.

The city also has developed a five-year funding plan to pay for removal of street trees and has ordered a second chipper to help dispose of trees as they are removed, Nelson said.

About 1,000 of the 7,800 trees growing between curbs and sidewalks in Boone are ash trees, he said.

A statewide quarantine restricting the movement of hardwood firewood, ash logs, wood chips and ash tree nursery stock out of Iowa into non-quarantined areas of other states was issued on Feb. 4 and remains in place.

With the exception of trunk injection, the window has closed for using other preventive methods against emerald ash borer this year, said Iowa State University Extension Entomologist Mark Shour.

Trunk injections can be done by certified pesticide applicators until Sept. 1, Shour said.

Other control measures (soil injection, soil drench, and basal trunk sprays) will need to wait until mid-April to mid-May next year, he said.

“The track record for research-based treatment of healthy ash trees on a good site is very good, approaching 100 percent protection,” he said.

Shour estimated that the cost of such treatment is from $10 to $15 per inch of trunk diameter.

The treatment has to be repeated every year or two, he said.

Other Iowa counties with infestations are Allamakee, Des Moines, Jefferson, Cedar, Union, Black Hawk, Wapello, Bremer, Muscatine, Jasper and Henry.

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