DEEP: EAB Targeted Audiences

Managing Emerald Ash Borer in Connecticut


Connecticut is working to slow the spread of the emerald ash borer (EAB).  If it takes longer for the insect to arrive in new locations, cities and towns will have more time to prepare themselves. 
Everyone can help with "slowing the spread".  Find out what you need to know regarding EAB.
 
Homeowners who have ash trees on their properties are encouraged to know the signs of the emerald ash borer (EAB).  Unless the insect is known to be in the vicinity, pre-emptive removal of ash trees is not recommended.  Healthy trees provide a great many environmental benefits, including contributing to the value of a property.  Trees infested by EAB or in the vicinity of an EAB infestation (about 15 miles) can be effectively treated with a systemic insecticide.
 
Homeowners are encouraged to be aware of the health and condition of all of their trees.  Should there be any questions regarding the health of their trees or the presence of EAB, homeowners are encouraged to make use of services such as those provided by an arborist licensed by the State of Connecticut.
 
Property owners who wish to cut down an ash tree, or any hardwood tree for that matter, and make use of it as firewood should be aware of the regulations regarding the movement of firewood.  In particular, property owners should know of the requirement for documentation regarding the transport of firewood.  The easiest way to meet this requirement is through a Self-Issued Firewood Transportation Certificate.

  
Woodland owners in Connecticut are encouraged to be able to recognize signs of the emerald ash borer, as well as to know how to identify individual ash trees.  Overall, ash is a small but significant component of the forests within the state, but it may be a major component of any individual woodland owner's property.  The wood from ash trees is considered to be valuable - as timber and as firewood - and the various species of ash are important trees for wildlife.
 
Because of the value of wood from ash trees, woodland owners are cautioned to be careful regarding solicitations for the pre-emptive removal of ash trees from their land.  Before selling trees, woodland owners are encouraged to seek the services of a CT DEEP certified forester.  By state law, anyone in Connecticut who plans or designs the harvest of commercial forest products on behalf of a woodland owner, or who advertises or solicits to do that planning or designing, must be certified as a forester.
 
DEEP Division of Forestry has a program of landowner assistance that is helpful in getting woodland owners "on the road" to good forest management.  The two DEEP Service Foresters provide advice and assistance upon request to private woodland owners.  This can be an excellent starting point for those concerned about what to do regarding the ash on their property. 
 
Woodland owners who wish to cut down an ash tree, or any hardwood tree for that matter, and make use of it as firewood should be aware of the regulations regarding the movement of firewood. In particular, property owners are encouraged to be aware of the requirement for documentation regarding the transport of firewood. The easiest way to meet this requirement is through a Self-Issued Firewood Transportation Certificate.
 


 
The movement of firewood is one of the primary means by which EAB and other invasive wood-boring insects are spread.  For this reason, there has been an intensive effort to make firewood users aware of these invasive pests, and to take steps to reduce the likelihood of moving the insect into new areas.  By following some basic and common sense measures, people who use firewood can have a real impact.
 
The best single piece of advice regarding firewood is to not use firewood that has either come from outside the immediate vicinity (roughly 25 miles) or from an area known to be infested by invasive insect pests.  If firewood from outside the immediate vicinity is to be used, then it should be treated in accordance with federally-mandated standards to ensure that it is not carrying harmful insects or diseases. 
 
In direct response to EAB, the State of Connecticut has issued a regulation that all individuals who transport firewood must have documentation accompanying that firewood.  The easiest way to meet this legal requirement is through a Self-Issued Firewood Transportation Certificate.  
 
Further details regarding EAB regulations and the quarantine are available on the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station EAB Page.
 

 
Because of the potential role that firewood could play in spreading EAB and other invasive insects, Connecticut has established specific responsibilities for those who sell firewood.  These responsibilities include requiring that any firewood dealer know the geographic source of any firewood that he or she is selling, and that dealers know whether any firewood from out of state meets the requirements established by USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the CT Agricultural Experiment Station.
 
Restrictions are also in place regarding the movement of firewood out of Connecticut.  APHIS is very concerned about the movement of firewood from an infested area to any non-infested areas, while individual states may have restrictions on the transport of firewood into the state.  Firewood dealers should be aware of these rules.
 
State regulations now also require that all individuals who transport firewood must carry documentation regarding the source and destination of that firewood. The easiest way to meet this requirement that those who transport firewood must have documentation is through a Self-Issued Firewood Transportation Certificate.  
 
In addition, firewood dealers can be a great help in "slowing the spread" by being an effective source of information for the public regarding invasive pests and their control.
 

 
 
As providers of woodland services, loggers and foresters are in an excellent position to provide information to woodland owners and the general public regarding the health of their trees and invasive insects.  By keeping informed as to the status of EAB and sharing their knowledge, forest practitioners play an important role in protecting the forest.  It is especially important that they help direct their clients to the right course of action. 
 
In early December 2014, Connecticut rescinded its quarantine requirements regarding the movement of ash sawlogs within the State of Connecticut, and joined the larger, multi-state federal quarantine established by the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.  Restrictions are still in place regarding the movement of sawlogs and other ash products to states where EAB is not yet known to occur.  Forest Practitioners who seek to move material out of state are obligated to know the restrictions in place governing this movement.
 
 
The concern of many municipalities is that, should the emerald ash borer arrive in their community, there will a relatively large number of dead or dying ash trees that will need to be handled. 
To be prepared for this, municipalities should know the size of the population of their ash trees, especially those along streets and in other public areas. 
 
Early detection of infested trees is helpful. Also, important individual trees can be saved by appropriate treatment.
 
Municipalities are also in a position to provide leadership to the community at large.  Municipalities can help the people in the community recognize the seriousness of the threat posed by EAB and guide them towards appropriate individual action.
 
Purdue University has developed an excellent Emerald Ash Borer Cost Calculator that can be used by municipalities to compare various EAB control strategies.  Inventory data on the local municipal ash population is needed in order to do the calculations specific to a municipality. 
 
Municipalities may also wish to research opportunities to make use of wood from ash trees and other species through the publication entitled The Use of Wood from Urban and Municipal Trees.

 
 
For individual property owners, it is arborists, landscapers and others in the green industry who are often the experts in the field regarding problems such as the emerald ash borer.  People rely on professionals to provide them with the information they need so that they can take appropriate action.  This is a considerable responsibility, which requires the professional to stay current with regards to threats to trees in the landscape, including EAB and other invasive insects.

 
Fortunately, there are several sources of information regarding EAB. 

Websites such as emeraldashborer.info nationally, and www.ct.gov/deep/eab locally, provide regular updates regarding the status of the insect as well as treatment options for professionals in the field. Fully understanding the threat that the emerald ash borer poses enables Connecticut to best manage the pest.

Background Information on the Emerald Ash Borer:

Information on the Movement of Wood in Connecticut:
Further details regarding EAB regulations and the quarantine are available on the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station EAB Page.



In the future, there will  be increased opportunities for effective controls to emerge, such as naturally arising or introduced biological agents (insects or diseases) that attack EAB, or new management techniques to limit the growth and spread of the population.
 
 
Content Last Updated December 23, 2014