Emerald Ash Borer Confirmed in Butler County

New infestation discovered in Clarksville

June 29, 2017, 8:21 am | Dustin Vande Hoef, Julie Sparks, Laura Sternweis

Emerald Ash BorerDES MOINES, Iowa – A highly destructive beetle that kills ash trees, the emerald ash borer has been positively identified from a residential tree in Clarksville. Butler County now becomes the 51st county in Iowa where this invasive pest has been confirmed.
All ash tree species are susceptible to attack by EAB. The larval stage of this insect feeding on the inner layer of bark inhibits the movement of life-sustaining water and nutrients throughout the tree. Starved trees usually die within two to four years.

EAB-infested ash trees can include dieback of the upper crown, water sprouts along the trunk and main branches, vertical bark splits, woodpecker damage, D-shaped emergence holes and S-shaped larval galleries under loose bark. Signs and symptoms often go undetected in the earlier stages of an infestation.    

“Now that summer is here and the vacation season is in full swing, this is a good time to remind people not to pack firewood that will be hauled long distances,” said Mike Kintner, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship EAB and gypsy moth coordinator. “Transporting firewood poses a risk for moving EAB or other harmful pests to new areas.”

At this calendar date, the treatment window for soil-applied preventive treatment measures (soil injection, soil drench or granular application) and basal bark sprays has ended. Trunk injections can be done now through the end of August if a landowner is interested in protecting a valuable and healthy ash tree within 15 miles of a known infestation. Good ground moisture is essential for systemic insecticide movement in a tree. Full details are available in Iowa State University Extension and Outreach publication PM2084.

The Iowa EAB Team provides EAB diagnostic assistance to landowners and includes officials from Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the USDA Forest Service.

To learn more about EAB and other pests threatening Iowa’s trees, please visit www.IowaTreePests.com.

For more information contact any of the following members of the Iowa EAB Team:

About the Authors: 

Julie Sparks

Iowa Department of Natural Resources