LINCOLN —The Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Nebraska Forest Service (NFS), confirmed the first discovery of emerald ash borer (EAB) in Hall County. EAB, an invasive beetle that attacks and kills ash trees and was first found in Nebraska 2016.
“Due to the confirmations of EAB in several new counties in Nebraska in 2020, covering a wide geographic area, NDA has determined that regulatory enforcement of a state quarantine is no longer warranted, and will rescind the Nebraska EAB quarantine effective immediately,” said NDA Director Steve Wellman. “NDA will continue to work with USDA on biocontrol releases targeting EAB as a long-term mitigation strategy, and continue to promote responsible disposable of ash materials and the “Don’t Move Firewood” campaign.”
The Nebraska EAB Working Group, which includes NDA, the USDA, Nebraska Game and Parks and the Nebraska Forest Services, offers the following suggestions to help prevent the human-assisted spread of the insect:
· Since EAB can easily be moved in firewood, always use locally-sourced firewood and burn it in the same county where you purchased it.
· Consider treating healthy, high-value ash tress located within a 15-mile radius of a known infestation. Treatment will need to be continually reapplied and will only prolong the tree’s life, not save it. Trees that are experiencing declining health should be considered for removal.
· If you are in a non-infested county and think you have found an EAB infestation, please report it to the Nebraska Department of Agriculture at 402-471-2351, the Nebraska Forest Service at 402-472-2944 or your local Extension office.
Additional information on EAB can be found on NDA’s website at: nda.nebraska.gov/plant/