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Invasive Emerald Ash Borer Found In Bloomington Neighborhood

The Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department is trying to eradicate the Emerald Ash Borers that have been found on the city's near-south side.

ash borer on leaf

Photo: John Obermeyer/Purdue University Department of Entomology

An adult emerald ash borer feeds off a leaf.

Hundreds of Bloomington’s ash trees may be felled after Emerald Ash Borers were found in a near-south side neighborhood.

The Emerald Ash Borer is a beetle native to Asia that attacks and destroys ash trees. Its larvae feed on the inner bark of the ash trees, disrupting the tree’s ability to transport water and nutrients. Earlier this month,the Indiana Department of Natural Resources confirmed the existence of the pest in Bloomington.

Bloomington Parks and Recreation Director Mick Renneisen says there are several methods to deal with the bugs, from cutting down all ash trees so the larvae cannot migrate from one tree to the next to waiting for damage to occur and only cutting down affected trees.

The trees can also be treated with an insecticide, which Renneisen is not sure will be effective. Renneisen says he would like input from the city’s Tree Commission before deciding which path to take.

“We would like them to create a policy statement that we would then take to the city administration and have some sort of plan of attack to what we will do in the future,” Renneisen says.

Although there has only been one confirmed sighting of the ash borer in Bloomington, officials say as many as 900 trees may be in danger.

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