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Information for land managers

1. Are there ash trees to manage?:

Emerald ash borer (EAB) only attacks true ash (Fraxinus) trees. So, the first thing to do is determine whether or not any of the trees on the land that you manage are ash. Mountain ash (Sorbus) is not a true ash so is not at risk.

2. Determine your risk:

If some of the trees are ash, are they in locations where they could become a hazard to people, buildings or other structures if they start to break apart? If so, you may need a tree inventory - a list of trees including their species, location, size and condition. An inventory will allow you to manage for hazard trees, set priorities for treatment or removal of ash trees, and to budget. There are different inventory strategies, depending on how many trees that you have, your budget and how much time you have to work with. Professionals can be hired to do this work for you - this may be useful if there are many trees to evaluate.

infested ash trees dying ash trees
Left: EAB-infested trees. Image: Chris Gynan, Silv-Econ Ltd.
Right: Ash tree with broken limb. Image: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and
Natural Resources - Forestry Archive,

3. Is there emerald ash borer on the property?:

There are a few methods used to detect emerald ash borer (EAB) - branch sampling and visual surveys may work best in this situation. Prism traps are also available. If you are near to a known infestation a detection survey may not be necessary since its arrival is imminent, but confirming its presence could help to secure funding for managing for the beetle.

4. Come up with a plan:

Ash trees killed by EAB can become hazardous quickly, creating safety and liability issues. Because of this, if you have ash trees in locations where they could injure people or damage property if they break apart, you'll need to have a plan for what do do about them. A management plan outlines your objectives and approach to dealing with ash trees, and usually summarizes your budget. Depending on your organization and the number of ash trees this may be very simple and informal, or it may be a detailed, formal document.

5. About emerald ash borer:

Want to know more about the beetle threatening your trees? Emerald ash borer arrived accidentally in Canada in solid wood packaging material. Since it was first detected in 2002 near Windsor Ontario, it has spread quickly and is now killing ash in many areas of southern Ontario and southwestern Quebec.

6. Network:

  • The Canadian Urban Forest Network listserv is an appropriate place to post your questions about municipal aspects of EAB.
  • LinkedIn interest groups such as ASCA Consulting Arborists, International Society of Arboriculture, and Urban Forestry have active discussion on aspects of EAB; Urban Forest Products Alliance has discussions on urban wood utilization.

7. Learn more:

Information about EAB is changing rapidly, there are a number of helpful websites, including:

  • The CFIA is a good source for learning about the current distribution and regulation of EAB in Canada.
  • Information about EAB distribution in the US is available through APHIS
  • An overview of EAB as well as some Canadian research on EAB is available through Canadian Forest Service.
  • Information and webinars on various EAB topics as well as US research can be found at the EAB Info website. Please note - insecticide options described in this U.S. website are not available in Canada.

8. Resources:

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