State starts ash-borer bug program

BOMOSEEN Dont be surprised if you see large purple boxes hanging from trees in Vermont this summer. These boxes are serving a very important purpose to survey for the invasive pest Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), which has been attacking and killing ash trees in the midwest since 2002. To date, Vermont has been free of EAB. As part of a national survey in conjunction with USDA, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture has begun placing the triangular purple insect traps that are about two feet tall, in and near ash trees in campgrounds and along roadsides throughout the state. They are designed to catch the destructive EAB, if it is present. The traps will be in place from June 10 to September 1, 2008. Although the exact quantity of white ash in Vermont forests is uncertain, it comprises between 5 and 15 percent of the hardwood forest in most areas. White ash is scattered throughout Vermont as individual trees and in isolated pockets. Green ash is generally present and usually abundant along riverbanks and lakeshores and is a dominant species in the Champlain Islands. The Agency of Agriculture began placing the traps around Vermont in early June 2008. The traps will remain in place until Sept. 1, 2008 and will be checked regularly. For more information on the traps, EAB or other invasive insects visit www.vermontagriculture.com.

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