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Emerald Ash Borers and Cold Weather

Could the extreme cold have an effect on this invasive species?

Posted: Feb. 13, 2019 7:18 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - It's something that's hard to see, but it can do a lot of damage if you aren't careful.

Emerald Ash Borers are an invasive species, but there has been a lot of talk about whether or not our extremes in temperature will affect their population.

"So it does do damage, but will it annihilate the population, I think we should continue to plan for emerald ash borer control."

Dana Gadeken works for the Purdue Extension Office here in Terre Haute.

She says while our colder-than-average temperatures CAN affect the population, it needs to be even colder to see a big change.

"So because we're not northern Canada, or Minnesota, then we're probably looking at, best case scenario, 30 to 40 percent of the population."

And she says that's because of their migration patterns.

"They started out in Massachusetts, and they systematically moved south where it's constantly warmer, and they moved west where they could get more food. So as they destroy all their food, they move west to new food."

But if you have Ash trees in your yard, there is hope.

Gadeken says there are many ways you can protect your trees.

"So if there's minimal damage, you can pour something in the soil, a pesticide in order to prevent your tree dying. If there's already some die back of the canopy and your ash tree is already starting to show stress, then you should talk to an arborist and they can do almost an intravenous pesticide treatment to bring your tree back."

But in the meantime, it's never a bad idea to take precautionary measures and prepare your trees for a normal season.

For more info, visit the extension office here: https://www.extension.purdue.edu/vigo

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