Washington, March 31, 2014 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) together with the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) today announced its 2014 plans for the Asian longhorned beetle (ALB) infestation in Clermont County, Ohio.
The program will continue survey efforts of host trees within the current regulated areas of Tate Township, Monroe Township and Stonelick/Batavia Townships. Surveys are completed by specially trained federal, state and contracted ground survey crews and tree climbers. Currently, a survey contract exists with Davey Tree Expert Company. Since June 2011, the program has conducted over 1 million host tree surveys.
The eradication program will use pesticide treatment applications in the same regulated areas of Monroe and Stonelick/Batavia Townships that were treated in 2013. In 2013, the program treated 13,232 host trees in these areas. Pesticide treatment applications will not be used in Tate Township this year as surveys and infested tree removals remain the priority. The use of treatment applications will be reevaluated annually.
Infested trees will continue to be removed throughout the year as they are detected. To date, 10,741 infested trees and 24,104 high-risk host trees have been removed from the Clermont County regulated areas.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) is offering an ALB Tree Canopy Enhancement Program for which affected property owners in Tate, Batavia, Stonelick, and Monroe Townships in Clermont County can select trees from the restoration tree list available at http://forestry.ohiodnr.gov/. For assistance in matching available tree species to your planting site, contact Wendi Van Buren, ODNR urban forester, at 513-932-6836 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Currently, there are 61 square miles under regulation in Clermont County. Program staff continues to monitor the regulated area, respond to service calls and conduct training sessions for compliance agreements. The eradication program holds compliance agreements with 232 companies working within the regulated area. Compliance trainings are available for businesses and individuals who perform work that may involve moving wood materials in the regulated area. To register, please call 513-381-7180.
APHIS continues to further develop pheromone traps, designed to lure and capture the insect. Trap placements in Ohio are expected to take place by June. Additional methods development projects include regulatory treatments for wood and nursery stock, looking at chip size and grinding techniques to deregulate host material, and assessing the use of pesticide treatment applications in the fall. Research continues with analysis to determine how fast the insect spreads on its own, evaluating the host trees the beetle attacks for preference and range, DNA analysis and behavioral experiments.
Additionally, APHIS has determined that it is necessary to add a treatment schedule for ALB in the Plant Protection and Quarantine Treatment Manual. A treatment evaluation document has been prepared that discusses the existing treatment schedule and explains why this change is necessary. The document is available to the public for review and comment until April 11. You can access the “Notice of Availability of a Treatment Evaluation Document for Heat Treatment for Asian Longhorned Beetle” (Docket No. APHIS-2013-0094) online at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=APHIS-2013-0094-0002.
Members of the public are encouraged to inspect their trees for signs of damage caused by the insect and report any suspicious findings. Firewood and other regulated articles are currently prohibited from leaving the regulated areas. For more information about the beetle and program activities, please visit www.aphis.usda.gov or www.AsianLonghornedBeetle.com or call the Ohio ALB Eradication Program directly at 513-381-7180.
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