What Is Emerald Ash Borer?

The emerald ash borer (EAB), Agrilus planipennis (Coleoptera: Buprestidae), was discovered as the cause of extensive ash tree  decline and mortality throughout southeastern Michigan in June 2002. Evidence suggests that A. planipennis first entered Michigan from China at least 15 years ago, presumably from solid wood packing materials or dunnage used to transport manufactured goods. EAB was subsequently found in at least 13 states and Ontario, Canada.  Spread of EAB results from EAB flight and human transport of infested ash firewood, logs, lumber, and nursery stock. For example, EAB-infested nursery stock from Michigan was illegally sold to a nursery in Prince George, Maryland and sold in Maryland and Fairfax County, Virginia in 2003.

To limit human-assisted spread of this pest from areas infested with EAB, states imposed quarantines and regulations on the transport of ash trees and ash wood products. Federal quarantines were imposed by USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

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