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Contact: John Kelly, 207-288-8703
The National Park Service and Maine Forest Service are hosting an ash tree bark peeling workshop to search for an invasive forest insect pest, the emerald ash borer (EAB), on Wednesday, January 27th, from 9 am to mid-afternoon. The workshop will be held in the maintenance garage at Acadia National Park Headquarters (20 McFarland Hill Drive) in Bar Harbor.
Girdled trap trees are one of the tools used to detect this highly invasive exotic forest insect pest. The bark is stripped off an ash tree in a one-foot band, cutting off the flow of nutrients and water between the crown and roots. Girdling stresses the tree and causes it to emit chemicals that attract any adult EAB in the area. The beetles lay their eggs in the furrows of the bark. Once the eggs hatch, the larvae burrow into the tree and begin to feed on the cambium, killing the tree within three to five years. Two small ash trees were girdled at the park this spring and additional trap trees were girdled by cooperating landownders on the island. These trees will be cut, peeled, and inspected for signs of the beetle. EABs have not been detected in Maine yet, but they have been found just across the state border in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
The public is welcome to drop in any time during the workshop and learn how to correctly peel ash trees for EAB detection. No reservations required. In the event of a winter storm, the workshop will be held on January 28th. For more information, please call Judy Hazen Connery, park biologist, at 207-288-8721.