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Emerald Ash Borer

EMERALD ASH BORER (EAB)

Adults. The Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis), is a beetle (Coleoptera) in the family Buprestidae. Adult EAB appear metallic, with emerald green hardened front wings (elytra). Adults are 7.5-13.5 millimeters (0.3-0.5 in) long. After having completed their development under the bark of an ash tree, in the spring new adults chew holes through the bark, producing a characteristic D-shaped exit hole. Newly emerged adults feed for about one week on ash leaves before mating, but cause little defoliation in the process. A typical female can live around six weeks and lay approximately 60–90 eggs, but some females live long enough to lay up to 200 eggs.

Eggs. Eggs are deposited between bark crevices, flakes, or cracks and hatch about two weeks later. Eggs are approximately 1.0 millimeters (0.04 in) long and 0.6 to 1.0 millimeter (0.02 to 0.04 in) in diameter, are initially white, but later turn reddish-brown and hatch in 7-10 days.

Larvae. EAB larvae are white and slightly flattened, with a pair of brown pincher-like appendages on the last abdominal segment. Larvae feed on an ash tree’s vascular cambium (a thin layer under a tree’s bark that produces new wood and conductive tissues). This feeding produces long serpentine galeries that interrupt transport of water and nutrients and kill the tree. Over the course of one or two years, EAB larvae develop through four growth stages (instars), shedding their skin (molting) between each instar. Fully mature fourth-instar larvae are 26 to 32 millimeter (1.0 to 1.3 in) long. In fall, mature fourth-instar larvae excavate chambers about 1.25 centimeters (0.49 in) into the sapwood or outer bark where they fold into a J-shape. Inside the chambers, the J-shaped larvae shorten into prepupae before converting into 10-14 millimeter (0.4-0.6 in) long pupae and then emerging as adults the following spring.

Impact. All species of ash (Fraxinus spp.), including those native to Texas, are vulnerable. EAB infestations in other states have devastated their ash trees. In many Texas cities, ash is an important ornamental tree in landscapes and along streets.

Spread of the pest. EAB populations can spread 20 km (12 mi) a year naturally. However, it is artificially spread much longer distances by transport of firewood and other infested wood products that contain ash bark, which allows EAB to reach new areas and create satellite populations. Prevention of the movement of infested firewood is a critical tool in impeding the spread of this highly destructive pest. Campers are strongly advised not to transport firewood, but to buy it locally, where they plan to use it.

 

EMERALD ASH BORER QUARANTINE

With the goal of containing and managing Emerald Ash Borer infestations, the department has filed emergency quarantine regulations in the Texas Register (Title 4, Chapter 19, Subchapter Z, §§19.700-19.703).

QUARANTINE REGULATIONS

CLICK HERE to view TDA's Emerald Ash Borer Emergency Quarantine regulations, as published in the Texas Register.

 

CURRENT QUARANTINED AREAS

Per Emergency Rule §19.701, the following counties in Texas are subject to the quarantine: Cass, Harrison, Marion, Tarrant.

CLICK HERE to view Map of Texas Emerald Ash Borer Quarantined Area. 

     
   
APPROVED REGULATORY TREATMENTS

CLICK HERE for the list of TDA-approved regulatory mitigation and treatment measures for the movement of EAB regulated articles from the quarantined areas. 

 

CHRONOLOGY

01/17/2019. The department filed an Emerald Ash Borer Emergency Quarantine with the Texas Register, adding Cass, Marion, and Tarrant Counties to the EAB quarantine.

11/06/2018. Multiple suspected EAB larvae were sampled from ash trees in the Eagle Mountain Lake area of Tarrant County; larvae were subsequently confirmed as EAB by the United States Department of Agriculture.

06/21/2018. One adult EAB was captured in a EAB trap near Queen City, Cass County, Texas.

06/01/2018. Two adult EAB were recovered from a EAB trap in Jefferson, Marion County, Texas.

06/30/2016. The department filed an Emerald Ash Borer Emergency Quarantine with the Texas Register quarantining Harrison County, Texas.

04/29/2016. Four adult males of EAB were discovered near Leigh, Harrison County, Texas.