Monday, June 20, 2011

June 20, 2011

Emerald Ash Borer Detected In Buffalo, New York

Collaborative Control Efforts Underway to Contain First Infestation Found in Erie County

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today announced an infestation of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) was found in the City of Buffalo's South Park. This is the first EAB infestation to be detected in Erie County. EAB is a small but destructive beetle that infests and kills North American ash tree species, including green, white, black and blue ash.

"The discovery of the Emerald Ash Borer in Buffalo is extremely unfortunate but not surprising," DEC Commissioner Joe Martens said. "Despite multi-state efforts to curtail its expansion, EAB has spread across the northeastern United States over the last decade. DEC is coordinating with federal and local government partners across the state to prevent the further spread of this destructive insect, especially outside of the quarantine areas. Awareness and preparedness are our best defenses, both of which are emphasized in DEC's strategic Slow Ash Mortality (SLAM) program."


"Emerald Ash Borer is a serious threat to the region and the City of Buffalo has been preparing for its arrival for some time," said Deputy Commissioner Andrew Rabb of the City of Buffalo's Department of Public Works, Parks and Streets. "An effort to reduce the number of ash on city property was put in place after the first outbreaks occurred in Michigan. Ash now makes up less than 2% of Buffalo's street tree population and roughly 10% of trees in city parks. The city is working closely with the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy to develop and implement a treatment plan for historic landscape trees."

Buffalo Olmsted Parks Executive Director Thomas Herrera-Mishler said, "We have been partnering with the City of Buffalo and DEC for over a year to prepare for this outbreak, raising funds and public awareness to try to minimize the impact of EAB on the historic Olmsted Parks and Parkways."

DEC, Cornell University, the City of Buffalo and Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy began collaborative response efforts to address the infestation at South Park immediately after the discovery last week. Initial surveying suggests that less than a dozen trees in South Park show signs of infestation; the trees are located along the park's perimeter in a natural wooded area.


EAB was first detected in New York State in Cattaraugus County in 2009. Since then, infestations have been confirmed in seven other counties including Genesee, Monroe, Livingston, Steuben, Greene, Ulster and now Erie. Sixteen counties in western New York and Greene and Ulster counties remain quarantined...

Read the full story here.


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