Emerald ash borer spotted in Watertown

UPDATED Friday, August 2, 2013 --- 9:45 p.m.
Reporter: Phil Levin

The invasive emerald ash borer inspect was spotted in Watertown, placing the entire county under quarantine.

Parks staff tell NBC 15 a trap caught one of the beetles Monday. Their larvae eat away at the insides of trees and can kill them in just a couple years. The state estimates one in five trees in urban areas are vulnerable ash.

The new quarantine of Dodge County adds to a 12 county infection area covering the southeastern corner of the state. The insect also prompted a quarantine in Sauk County.

Quarantines require wood from an infected area not travel to unaffected parts of the state, or that businesses work with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection to prevent spread.

For more information on the ash borer and how to check if your trees are infected head here.

The insect was first spotted in the United States near Detroit in 2002.


Posted Friday, August 2, 2013 --- 2:40 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin officials have confirmed emerald ash borer in the northern unit of Kettle Moraine State Forest.

Department of Natural Resources staff found an adult beetle in a trap set at the Mauthe Lake campground.

Officials say the pest poses a minimal threat on most of the 30,000-acre northern unit, because it contains few ash trees.

It's the first time the tree-killing pest has been found in Fond du Lac County. But the county has been under quarantine for emerald ash borer since 2008, because it's near infestations in neighboring Washington County.

Wisconsin agriculture officials say emerald ash borer also was found in Watertown's Riverside Park. Dodge County will be put under quarantine.

The quarantine prohibits wood products from being moved out of the county to areas that are not infested.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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