If you’ve camped anywhere in the U.S.you’ve seen “Don’t move firewood” warnings. Following this directive might seem rather silly if you have perfectly good firewood sitting in your backyard and you’d rather not pay for it in campground offices, but it’s for a good reason. An infestation of Emerald Ash Borer beetles has spread across the country causing the death of tens of millions of Ash trees.
The beetle, originally from Asia, first entered the U.S. in 2002 via ships that transported infected Ash trees. Landowners purchased the trees at local nurseries, not knowing parasitic larvae were buried within the trees. As the larvae grew, the tree’s ability to transport water and nutrients was disrupted, leading to its death within two years. Upon completion of a beetle’s maturation, adult beetles simply fly on to the next Ash tree and lay their eggs in order to repeat the deadly cycle.
In hopes of controlling the spread locally, and ensuring homeowner safety from falling dead tree branches, Lawrence Township will be treating infected trees on Township property, removing them if treatment does not work, and replacing them to preserve the landscape. To do this, the Township will use an appropriation obtained through the 2016 operating budget and a $30,000 Community Stewardship Incentive grant.
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