Emerald ash borer (EAB) infestations have been detected for the first time in 12 Missouri counties this spring. In southeastern Missouri, EAB was detected in Carter, Dent, Iron, Phelps, Ripley, Shannon, Stoddard, St. Francois, St. Genevieve, and Texas counties. The addition of those counties to previously known infestations results in a contiguous block of 18 EAB positive counties in that part of the state.
EAB was also detected for the first time this spring in Clinton and Ray counties, adding to the four other Missouri counties and five Kansas counties with EAB infestations in the vicinity of Kansas City and St. Joseph. Other infestations are present in the St. Louis and Hannibal areas. A total of 27 counties are now known to have EAB infestations across Missouri.
The big jump in number of EAB detections this year is largely due to an increased effort by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) visually surveying for infestations in southeast Missouri. The USDA and Missouri Department of Agriculture are also monitoring EAB traps in many counties throughout the state to detect additional infestations.
EAB populations can expand slowly on their own to new areas, but the primary way that EAB spreads quickly is by movement of firewood. As the number of EAB infestations increases, the risk of EAB hitchhiking on firewood increases. To slow the spread of EAB and other invasive forest pests, don’t move firewood. Buy it near where you burn it!
You can prepare for EAB’s arrival by knowing the signs of an EAB infestation. Report EAB suspects if they’re in a new county where EAB has not yet been found. And start planning how you can manage EAB infestations when they arrive in your community. For more information see: eab.missouri.edu