By Paul Burton, WBZ-TVBy Paul Burton

CONCORD, N.H. (CBS) — Kyle Lombard from the New Hampshire Division of Forest and Lands says they’ve just found the first tree ever infested with thousands of emerald ash borer, an invasive species of beetle that attacks and kills ash trees.

“It basically starves the tree to death,” Lombard said.

The emerald ash borer, is originally from China and is responsible for the death of millions of ash trees nationwide since being discovered in Michigan in 2002.

New Hampshire officials say the beetle threatens more than 25 million ash trees in the state.

State and federal agencies say the emerald ash borer made its way into New Hampshire through the transportation of fire wood. They are now implementing plans to help control the spread of the beetle.

Step one would consist of cutting trees down that are infested. Step two includes applying pesticides for protection. And the final step involves setting up artificial trap trees to attract the beetle.

“We don’t know the size of the outbreak. That’s why it’s important that we survey the area. We don’t know the number of trees that it could impact,” Brad Simpkins of the Division of Forests and Lands said.

Officials say it will be up to the home owner to cover the cost of tree removal on their property.

“It’s going to be sad. I think there is potential for tens of thousands of trees to die in about five years,” Lombard said.

Paul Burton


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