SC Wildlife Officials Looking For Tree Killing Bug - WSPA.com

SC Wildlife Officials Looking For Tree Killing Bug

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Ag officials in NC are ordering an emergency quarantine restricting the movement of firewood or any parts of ash trees from leaving three counties along the Virginia border. Ag officials in NC are ordering an emergency quarantine restricting the movement of firewood or any parts of ash trees from leaving three counties along the Virginia border.
CLEMSON, S.C. -

Big, sticky, purple traps await the arrival of the emerald ash borer.

"It is the only way to detect the presence of the beetle," said Sherry Aultman, CAPS survey coordinator.

Aultman has been closely monitoring the spread of the invasive beetle.

Last week, she learned the emerald ash borer was discovered in North Carolina for the first time.

"The news that it was found in North Carolina is not surprising," Aultman said.

North Carolina is the 19th state in the country to confirm the presence of the bug.

Emerald ash borers were first detected in Michigan in 2002, and authorities estimate the insect has killed more than 50 million ash trees since then.

The pest basically eats trees from the inside out.

"It is very possible that since it has been discovered in North Carolina, we will see it here in South Carolina before too long," said Scott Hawkins with the S.C. Forestry Commission.

Ash trees are most commonly turned into baseball bats, handles for tools and can used as firewood.

North Carolina Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler is ordering an emergency quarantine restricting the movement of not only firewood, but any parts of ash trees from leaving three counties: Granville, Person and Vance after the destructive pest was found there.

Aultman says the only way to slow the movement of the pest is to literally stop it in its tracks.

Clemson University has 330 traps currently hanging throughout the state

Trapping season for the emerald ash borer lasts from May to September.

Officials are asking for the public's assistance in ensuring the traps are not disturbed or damage.

If you find a trap on the ground, please call (864) 646-2140 or visit the Department of Plant Industry's Invasive Species website for more information.

(The Associated Press Contributed To This Report.)

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