Indiana Department of Natural Resources scientists are reporting the presence of the invasive emerald ash borer beetle in another southern Indiana county – Monroe county. The foreign pest attacks ash trees and has killed tens of millions of them since it was detected in nine Midwestern states. But Indiana Natural Resources insect expert Phillip Marshall says people are most responsible for spreading the pest.
“The insect spreading by itself, it’s going to take quite a bit of time and effort. But where it’s going to spread more quickly is by moving firewood,” says Marshall.
That’s because the ash borer can’t fly very far. Marshall says the biggest concern about its spread has to do with individuals moving firewood. Because the ash also has commercial timber value in Indiana, he says his department has worked closely with timber harvesters to try to control the infestation.