As previously reported, the invasive Emerald Ash Borer has been found in DeWitt County.
Steve Lobb, the Public Works Director for the City of Clinton and an Arborist says the Emerald Ash Borer uses the ash tree as a host and slowly kills it. He says it could be several months before the bug is detected, however, once it has been detected, it may be too late to save the tree.
[audio:eab4.mp3]Word from Lobb[/audio]
Despite knowing for many years of the threat the Emerald Ash Borer poses to the region, Lobb says their is a real possibility the Ash tree population could be wiped out of central Illinois.
[audio:eab5.mp3]Word from Lobb[/audio]
Early on in other parts of the country, when the bug would be discovered, Ash trees within a half a mile of the infected tree would be cut down, however, that method was ineffective, as the bug is still migrating and still infecting Ash trees. Lobb says, while there are treatment options to fight the bug, he says because it is such a new development, science continues to discover new things on the bug.
[audio:eab6.mp3]Word from Lobb[/audio]
If you head down country roads or are out walking and you notice purple boxes up in certain trees, those are the traps the USDA is using to monitor the bugs. The traps are purple because the bug is attracted to the color purple.
Lobb says the bug will search for older trees with some possible health problems, and branch out from there.