City Trees

July/August 2013

City Trees is a premier publication focused on urban + community forestry. In each issue, you’ll learn how to best manage the trees in your community and more!

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Page 25 of 39

Successes and Vigilance in Eradicating ALB by Rhonda Santos, Public Information Officer, USDA APHIS Asian Longhorned Beetle Eradication Program If all things are relative, the Asian longhorned beetle is a cancer of trees. As a member of SMA, you likely know about the beetle or ALB (Anoplophora glabripennis) and its impact on trees. What I think you haven't heard enough about is the effort to rid ourselves and our trees of this pest. Much like you or I might undergo treatment for a detection of cancer, the areas fighting Asian longhorned beetle infestation are also undergoing treatment. The treatment is "administered" by at least two lead agencies: the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), which serves as the lead federal agency, and a lead state agency which is usually the state's own department of agriculture. Both federal and state agencies work in cooperation with other federal and state partners as well as with local municipalities to discuss what is known about an infestation. They also discuss the available treatment options and work together to make decisions regarding the strategies that will be used. eradicated from Illinois in 2008). And for even more good news, Canada announced in April the eradication of an infestation found in the cities of Vaughan and Toronto. This success followed nearly a decade of collaborative efforts between federal, provincial and municipal authorities. But while the eradications of ALB in these areas are a victory for all of us, we all still need to stay vigilant and inspect trees regularly for signs of infestation, especially since trees in all states are at risk. Surveying or inspecting trees means looking at the host trees the beetle attacks for the beetle itself or signs of damage caused by it. The most concerning signs are dime-sized exit holes, roughly 1⁄4 inch (6 mm) or larger, perfectly round, and not all in a row Images Courtesy of USDA APHIS The goal is to eradicate the beetle while saving as many trees as possible. APHIS and its cooperators undertake eradication by imposing quarantines, conducting regulatory inspections, surveying host trees by using both ground and aerial visual survey methods, removing infested and high-risk host trees, and chemically treating un-infested host trees—and the plan has shown success. While the beetle has been detected in five U.S. states—New York (1996), Illinois (1998), New Jersey (2002), Massachusetts (2008), and Ohio (2011)— just this past May, the New York City boroughs of Manhattan and Staten Island declared themselves free of the pest. They were the second and third areas in the state to declare eradication; the first was Islip, NY on Long Island in 2011. Quarantines remain in effect for the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens as well as an area in central Long Island. An area can be declared free of the beetle after all the infested trees are eliminated and multiple surveys are negative for active signs of the beetle activity or the presence of the beetle itself. This past March, the state of New Jersey declared itself free from ALB, becoming the second state to declare eradication (the beetle was successfully 26 Inspector finds the tell-tale, dime-sized, round exit holes of ALB. Climbers inspecting for ALB City Trees

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