Vacancy at the Emerald Ash Borer Motel

Vacancy at the Emerald Ash Borer Motel

“Frank, are you sure this is the place?”

The first known infestation of the emerald ash borer beetle (EAB) in the United States was in 2002 in Michigan. Since 2002 this beetle has spread to CO, CT, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, MD, MA, MN, MO, NH, NY, NC, OH, PA, TN, VA, WV, and WI and has killed millions of ash trees. The EAB originally hails from Asia and it is believed to have reached the United States through infested wood products. Infestation occurs when adults lay eggs within an ash tree. The hatched larvae incubate within the tree and slowly bore through the tree creating a network of tunnels. Once larvae have undergone metamorphosis they disperse from the infested tree and begin the cycle anew. After initial infestation, a tree usually succumbs to damages in a few years. EAB spreads through the movement of infested ash products, particularly fire wood. There are a variety of ways to stem the tide of the EAB but the most effective is to not move fire wood or other ash products from an infested area. For more information please see the websites below.

About this illustration: The idea for this post came from seeing large ash trees in a nearby park tagged for EAB monitoring which led me to think about those purple traps that can sometimes be found hanging from an ash tree. The traps use the color purple to attract the beetle and a sticky solution on the exterior to trap them. This led me to think about “roach motels” and the traps posing as motels to the unsuspecting emerald ash borer.

National EAB Information Website:

Stop the Beetle: Emerald Ash Borer Beetle (EAB):

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