Program Review

Emerald Ash Borer: Research and Technology Development Meeting


From: V. Mastro and R. Reardon (compilers), Emerald Ash Borer Research and Technology Development Meeting, Romulus, Michigan, Oct 5-6, 2004. USDA Forest Service publication FHTET-2004-15.




Managing the Emerald Ash Borer in Canada

Kenneth R. Marchant, Forestry Specialist, Canadian Food Inspection Agency 174 Stone Rd. W., Guelph, Ontario N1G 4S9 Canada

The emerald ash borer (EAB) is believed responsible for the death of an estimated 100,000 ash trees in Ontario in 2004 with significant mortality being observed in Essex County this summer. In all, over a billion ash trees are at risk in Ontario alone with an estimated additional billion ash trees threatened in the rest of Canada.

In January of 2004, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) established a firebreak or ash-free zone (AFZ) in advance of the known leading edge of the infestation. In excess of 100,000 trees were removed from a 30x10 km. zone running from Lake Erie to Lake St. Clair in an effort to provide a barrier to the natural spread of EAB to more forested areas to the east of the zone.

Throughout 2004, detection surveys have continued at high risk areas in southern Ontario and other locations across the province. Unfortunately, EAB has been detected in significant numbers beyond the AFZ in the vicinity of the former City of Chatham. No other populations have been detected, and infested trees in Chatham are being removed.

In addition to surveillance, the CFIA has also placed considerable emphasis on enforcing regulations on the movement of firewood and other forest products and on communication of the EAB hazard.

The CFIA is currently evaluating survey data and developing management options for review by its Science and Survey Committee and senior management and will make a decision on next steps early this fall.



National Emeral Ash Borer Management Plan

Philip Bell, USDA–APHIS, PPQ, 920 Main Campus Dr., Suite 200 Raleigh NC 27606-5210

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) continues it’s partnership with state cooperators from Departments of Agriculture in Michigan, Ohio, Virginia, and Maryland and the Department of Natural Resources in Indiana, to carry out program delivery activities designed to detect, contain, and eradicate emerald ash borer (EAB). In addition, APHIS collaborates with USDA Forest Service in tree restoration of eradication sites following tree removals, and the development of a Reduced Ash Zone.

The EAB program currently employs 21 APHIS employees to carry out regulatory, environmental monitoring, administrative, and methods development components of the program. Total staff for all program activities, including state cooperator participation, totals nearly 180 positions.

The EAB program relies heavily on the Science Advisory Panel (SAP) for scientific recommendations to use in developing program strategies and establishing protocols for program delivery operations. APHIS formed the Science Advisory Panel in Oct. of 2002 to provide science-based guidance for program implementation. This group of forest entomologist was selected by the SAP Chairman Dr. Vic Mastro and National Program Manager Mike Stefan to review data regarding EAB biology and forest pest behavior to provide guidance and program direction. To further develop and refine SAP recommendations for program delivery, APHIS established an EAB Management Team to write programmatic protocols and implement various components procedures into program initiatives.

EAB is a costly pest. The ash nursery stock industry has collapsed in Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan as a result of infestation, and the transportation of firewood is severely restricted in all three states. Local governments in Michigan are saddled with enormous cleanup costs associated with dead and dying trees.

Since October of 2002, APHIS has provided funding for EAB program delivery on a year-by-year basis:

2002 - $ 900,000
2003 - $15,200,000
2004 - $43,000,000

APHIS plans to continue established program strategies by utilizing current program direction outlined in the EAB National Management Plan.



FHTET Assistance with the Reduced Ash Zone

Judy Adams and Frank Sapio, USDA Forest Service–FHTET 2150 Centre Ave., Bldg. A Fort Collins, CO 80526

The Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team (FHTET), in cooperation with the Northeast Area, is providing technology assistance to the emerald ash borer (EAB) eradication effort. The EAB management effort is based upon a zone strategy in which different activities target different population levels of EAB. One such zone, the Reduced Ash Zone (RAZ), coupled with other regulatory activities, is designed to reduce the natural spread of EAB.

FHTET was asked to delineate the RAZ based upon ash density and known EAB infestations. Tabular county-level data from the USFS Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) was used in proof of concept, documenting the wide range of ash density, and assessing the feasibilityof establishing an RAZ. Urban areas or areas classed as “non-forest” are currently not well-represented in FIA, creating a need to capture additional information on ash density where FIA plots do not exist.

A more spatially explicit approach is warranted as ash density is a critical factor for the location and maintenance of a RAZ. In order to create this critical management zone, natural resources managers need to understand various factors describing ash populations. Critical questions regarding implementation of a RAZ include: where are the trees? how many are there? how big are they? and how difficult will they be to harvest?

Geographic information system (GIS) analysis of remote sensing data was utilized initially to define the location of a potential RAZ. These results were compared with those of colleagues in other agencies, and a potential RAZ corridor was negotiated. In order to locate the RAZ and determine the feasibility of implementing a zone of reduced ash, FHTET collected color-infrared (CIR) aerial photography for Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan covering 5,000 photo points and producing 2,500 images. Digital ortho-quads (DOQs) provided by the State of Michigan and State of Ohio were also used in this plot characterization phase.

The survey used available aerial photography to inventory land use patterns across the potential RAZ corridor. FHTET staff conducted the photo interpretation producing a land use stratification across the entire RAZ corridor. That land use stratification provided the basis for allocating ground plots more efficiently than a simple random sample. The survey design for data collection was developed for field crews and implemented through a custom data entry and GIS application. Field data from over 600 plots were collected by Emerald Ash Borer Response Program Staff representing four cooperating agencies. The final data set will be analyzed and results summarized for an EAB science panel meeting in mid-December 2004. FHTET will continue to provide assistance throughout the data analysis phase, generating ash density output reports and maps as the feasibility of implementing a RAZ is investigated.

The field data sheet layout is provided below to show the variables collected.



Michigan’s Emerald Ash Borer Response Project

Tim Flint, Michigan Department of Agriculture PO Box 30017 Lansing, MI 48909

In 2004, the Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) and its task force partners continue to adapt and respond to the impact of the emerald ash borer (EAB) in Michigan. Objectives for 2004 include containment and restoration activities in the core infestation area, a statewide EAB survey, removal of isolated infestations of EAB outside the EAB quarantine, and a quarantine enforcement element supported by a strong communication and regulatory plan.

Southeast Michigan core area activities now include maintaining seven marshalling yards for no-cost disposal of ash materials. This process has generated over 170,000 tons of fuel wood for green power in addition to the now operational wood utilization activities that are creating lumber, railroad ties, tool handles, etc. EAB marshalling yards accomplish two program objectives: mitigation of EAB populations and a reduction of the economic impact of EAB in affected communities. Restoration of tree canopy is a priority in this area.

In survey activities designed to establish the distribution of EAB in Michigan, a statewide system of 10,000 “trap trees” has been installed to detect the presence of EAB outside known areas of infestation. The trap tree distribution has the highest densities in Lower Michigan, ranging from 36 traps per township down to a density in some UP townships of 1 or 2 per township. Trap tree recovery is ongoing, the results of which will be used to formulate response strategies in support of program goals. In related actions with partner agencies, the Michagan Department of Natural Resources has trap trees in place at strategic locations such as campgrounds that may have been destinations for collection of ash firewood and similar activities. All data will be shared and evaluated for development of response plans.

Where EAB infestation is identified in isolated sites outside the generally infested area, MDA and response partners will develop and implement a response strategy designed to eliminate EAB from the sites and suppress EAB at sites where the objective is to reduce the pressure to spread. Once trap tree results are compiled, response strategies will begin.

MDA continues to work with program partners to evaluate the ability to define an area of reduced ash presence, a “Reduced Ash Zone,” in support of the science panel objective of defining an area where the natural spread of EAB can be interrupted by survey and response. Additional activities may include development of voluntary mechanisms to reduce ash by timber sale and the sale of ash wood fiber in the wood utilization markets. This zone must be defined after the distribution of EAB is mapped following the recovery of the trap trees in Michigan and neighboring states.



Michigan Emerald Ash Borer Detection Survey

Andrew J. Storer, Elizabeth E. Graham, and Michael D. Hyslop, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, Michigan Technological University, 1400 Townsend Drive, Houghton, MI 49931-1295

Robert L. Heyd, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, 1990 U.S. Hwy. 41 South, Marquette, MI 49855

Emerald ash borer (EAB), Agrilus planipennis (Coleoptera: Buprestidae), was first identified in southeast Michigan in 2002, where it has killed millions of ash trees (Fraxinus spp.). In the summer of 2004, trap trees were established at over 100 sites throughout Michigan in an effort to detect sub-damage threshold populations of this exotic species. This study combined the most effective known method for detecting this insect with the locations where emerald ash borer is most likely to have been introduced through the movement of firewood.

Field sites were located in proximity to campgrounds at Michigan State Parks, Michigan State Forest Campgrounds, County Parks, and USDA Forest Service Campgrounds. The Michigan State Parks Visitor Database, which tracks visitors to state parks by zipcode, was used to select campgrounds with the highest cumulative number of visitor days by visitors from EAB-infested zipcodes between 2001 and 2003. This information, in combination with the distribution of ash throughout Michigan, was used to select state park and state forest campground high-risk EAB survey sites. USDA Forest Service Campgrounds were selected based on the local presence of ash resources. Sites were also established in parks within the core EAB-in-fested area.

Trap trees were girdled by removing the bark from a portion of the stem. Sticky traps were placed on trees and monitored every two weeks during the flight period of the beetle. Additional data were collected by inspection of firewood piles and declining ash trees near the survey sites.

During the survey, no EAB were detected on trap trees in areas outside the core infested area. During inspections of over 2,000 firewood piles, EAB was detected in three new locations: Merrill Lake County Park in Mecosta County, Rifle River State Recreation Area in Ogemaw County, and North Higgins Lake State Park in Roscommon County. At infested sites in southeastern Michigan, girdled trap trees caught more beetles than non-girdled trees. Some trees at infested sites were more attractive to EAB than others throughout the season as trap catches in the first two week period were positively correlated with total catch in the remainder of the season. This relationship was evident for both girdled and non-girdled trees.

At the end of the survey, a subsample of trap trees were cut and had portions of bark peeled from them to survey for EAB larvae. Selections of trees for cutting were based on a decision tree that considered tree hazard, number of trees cut per site, and the wishes of the local land manager. Remaining standing trees will be a resource for further EAB detection work. Information about this project can be found at www.emeraldashborer.org.



Ohio Emerald Ash Borer Update

Thomas Harrison, Ohio Department of Agriculture, 1855 Fountain Square Court, H-1, Columbus, OH 43224

This presentation describes the current emerald ash borer (EAB) situation in Ohio. There have been approximately 13 infestations identified in Ohio. Several are located in Toledo and the southwest portion of Lucas County, and one infestation is located east of the Maumee River in Lucas County. Tree removals are currently underway at one infestation in southern Wood County; another eradication area is the result of a Michigan infestation just over the border from central Williams County. Recently, all of Lucas County east of the Maumee River and eastern portions of Fulton and Henry Counties were added as regulated areas under the Ohio EAB Quarantine. The current plan is to pursue eradication of all infestations.

There are currently 22 fulltime EAB staff people. Regulatory activities include contacting firewood dealers, landscapers, nurseries, trees services, and nursery stock dealers throughout northwest Ohio and in quarantined areas. A Labor Day firewood blitz was recently held along the Michigan border. Approximately 850 trap trees were established throughout the proposed Reduced Ash Zone and areas surrounding previous eradications resulting in a few new EAB finds, and all traps should be down by the end of November.



Maryland Emerald Ash Borer Update

Dick Bean, Plant Protection & Weed Management Section, Maryland Department of Agriculture 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway, Annapolis, MD 21401

The following activities have been implemented since completing the ash removal from the ½mile buffer area around the affected nursery in Brandywine, Maryland (Prince George’s County) on April 7, 2004:

April 9, 2004 – Six stumps in the buffer area were set up as sentinel trap trees (wrapped in purple tinted Saran Wrap and coated in Tangle Trap). Checked 13 times: no EAB detected. 150 2” dbh, bare root, dormant green ash were ordered from Bailey’s Nurseries; the trees arrived on May 17, 2004.

May 18-20, 2004 – Sixty ash were planted at Brandywine, 20 at Fort Washington (Prince Georges County) and 20, at the Odenton (Anne Arundel County) sites. The remainder of trees (50) were used by Forest Pest Management as trap logs. All planted ash sentinel trees were wrapped as above on May 20.

May 25, 2004 – An EAB emergence hole was detected at the Fort Washington site. Ten ash trees were removed and stripped from the parking lot landscaping, revealing only one beetle was present. These trees had been reported as planted in 2002. Other trees had been previously removed when they were identified by landscaper as ash trees and replaced in 2003. A stripped trunk was set up as trap tree experiment.

May 26, 2004 - An EAB emergence hole was detected at the Odenton site. The tree with the emergence hole was stripped, and evidence of only a single beetle was found. Approximately 80 ash trees planted in 2002 remain at the site and have been examined seven times for emergence holes. No additional emergence holes have been detected.

Thirty-eight ash trees, either missed in the original destruction at the nursery or brought in afterward, were seized and destroyed June 28–July 8, 2004. All trees were stripped and no evidence of EAB found.

Sentinel trees were regularly serviced between 10 and 12 times. The Saran Wrap was replaced every other service period. Gaye Williams (MDA Entomologist) examined the removed wraps and Buprestids collected and stored for future identification. No EAB detected.

Mike Galvin, Maryland DNR Forest Service, Supervisor, Urban and Community Forestry, mailed vouchers the first week of August to the affected landowners for trees removed from their properties. The replacement trees were supplied by Shemin’s Nursery as part of the Tree-mendous program.

Qualifying: 155 trees on 55 sites owned by 26 property owners in four counties

Redeemed: 99 trees (63 percent) on 35 sites (64 percent) by 11 property owners in three counties

Preference for shade trees (80 percent) to ornamental (20 percent): 32 red maple, 47 pin oak, 8 dogwood, and 12 redbud

The burn area was seeded during the second week of April and a good cover of grass presently exists. Small ash pieces buried in the process are sending up shoots. Trees were felled across the entrance to prevent access per the directive of the property overseers.

A follow up walk through of the ½-mile buffer detected a couple of small trees that were missed. These will be felled and stripped. The Garlon 3 stump treatment was very successful: the stumps show no signs of sprouting.

In 2005, an intensive survey effort will be conducted for EAB around the state.