Photo Credit: Oregon Department of Forestry
Emerald ash borer slender, shiny green body. Photo Credit: Will Parson, Chesapeake Bay Program
Photo Credit: ODA
Photo Credit: Johnson Creek Watershed Council
Emerald Ash Borer's capital D-shaped exit holes. Photo Credit: Daniel Herms, the Ohio State University, Bugwood.org
S-shaped galleries left by emerald ash borer. Photo Credit: Edward Czerwinski, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Bugwood.org
Ash tree effected by emerald ash borer. Photo Credit: Ryan Armbrust, Kansas Forest Service, Bugwood.org
The emerald ash borer (EAB) is a highly destructive forest pest that infests and kills many species of ash trees. Since its discovery in North America in 2002, EAB has killed tens of millions of ash trees. EAB presents a significant concern to the Pacific Northwest where ash trees are abundant along streams, urban forests, and neighborhood streets.
|Early Detection and Rapid Response species:||Yes|
|General Description:||EAB has a slender, shiny green body. When its wings are open, they reveal a red metallic abdomen. |
Its head is slightly indented with bulging eyes.
|Distinguishing Features:||Larva create S-shaped galleriesGalleries Channels or engravings underneath a tree's bark created by insects. underneath the bark as they feed on their host tree. |
When the larva grow into adults, the insects exit the tree through a capital D-shaped exit hole in the bark.
|Size:||Up to 0.5 inches (13 millimeters) long.|
|Life Cycle:||1 – 2 years. EAB has four life stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult.|
- EAB only infest and kill ash trees. Native Oregon ash (Faxiunus latifolia) is particularly susceptible to EAB infestation.
- Ash trees are commonly found along riparian areasRiparian Areas Areas of land that occur along the edges of rivers, streams, lakes, and other bodies of water., wetlands, urban forests, and streets.
- EAB is a wood-boring insect. Its larvae burrow into ash trees and feed on the inner bark and phloemPhloem The inner bark of a tree which transports water and nutrients to the rest of the tree., creating its distinguishing “S”-shaped galleries.
- In areas where EAB is present, ash trees have a nearly 99% mortality rate.
- The loss of ash trees along waterways will result in increased water temperature and reduced wildlife habitat. This includes habitat for several endangered salmon and steelhead species.
- The reduction of urban trees will increase air and water pollution and the urban heat island effect.
What we’re doing about it:
- Emerald ash borer is a priority species for Tualatin SWCD. If identified within Washington County, a specially trained crew can verify the observation.
- Learn more about what conservation agencies are doing about EAB.
What you can do about it:
- If you think you’ve found emerald ash borer anywhere in Oregon, please report it to the Oregon Invasive Species Hotline.
- Individuals should learn how to identify EAB and the signs of an infestation.
- Adult insects are most likely to be spotted in June and July. Finding an insect is a good indication there is an infected ash tree nearby.
- Infested trees will drop leaves starting at the top of the canopy. Eventually the entire crown will appear thin or dead.
- Invasive pests, like EAB, can be spread when infested firewood is transported to new areas. Don’t move firewood, instead buy it where you burn it.
There are many native and non-native insects that look like EAB. Use this chart to help identify EAB.