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GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 11:58 pm
by James Parton
I think Will Blozan made the comment in a recent post that the beetle was only a county away from the park.

http://www.citizen-times.com/article/20 ... /100815015

http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2010/jul/2 ... tennessee/

All the smokies need is another destructive pest. The adelgid has done enough damage.

JP

Beetles that destroy ash trees reach Tennessee

Posted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 12:04 pm
by edfrank
Beetles that destroy ash trees reach Tennessee
(Same link as James posted above)
By Morgan Simmons
Knoxville News Sentinel
Posted July 29, 2010 at 10:26 p.m.

http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2010/jul/2 ... d=Facebook


Click on image to see its original size
A small, metallic-green beetle that destroys ash trees has made its way to Tennessee.

For the past several years, state agriculture officials have been on the lookout for the emerald ash borer, an exotic insect pest discovered in southeastern Michigan in 2002 that has since spread to 14 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces.

Tennessee's first outbreak was discovered near Knoxville two weeks ago. An out-of-state forestry professional happened to notice an ash tree with tell-tale signs of emerald ash borer damage at a truck stop in Knox County near the Loudon County line. Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture positively identified an adult beetle collected at the site as an emerald ash borer.

In response to the find, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture will issue a quarantine in Knox and Loudon counties prohibiting the movement of firewood, ash nursery stock, ash timber and other materials that can spread the emerald ash borer.
Related link.Deptartment of Agriculture's information page on the Emerald Ash Borer
http://tn.gov/agriculture/regulatory/eab.html

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Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:13 am
by KoutaR
ENTS,

Truly bad news. How bad had the beech bark disease hit the Smokies? Have beeches really been "wiped out"?

Kouta

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 9:40 am
by James Parton
Kouta,

To the best of my memory the beeches have not been wiped out. I do remember some being affected though. A while back Will Blozan pointed one out to me. Will could answer this better. He is our GSMNP expert.

James

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 9:18 am
by Lee Frelich
James:

We had our first ash tree on campus in St.Paul MN cut down due to emerald ash borer this summer. Also the first occurrence in Minneapolis was this summer.

I heard a presentation about forests that had been hit by EAB in Ohio, and unfortunately buckthorn, Japanese barberry, and other invasive plants were replacing the ash trees when they died.

Lee

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 9:50 am
by James Parton
Lee,

When my wife Joy sent me this article on EAB I thought of those nice ash trees I observed up on the Rattlesnake Lodge section of the Mountains-To-Sea trail ( NC ) a few months ago. It could kill all of them.

Jenny also sent a nice picture of her in a great ash tree recently. It really sucks to see such great trees like that killed by an exotic pest. Yeah, just like Cataloochee's hemlocks.

James

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Sat Aug 21, 2010 9:18 am
by Will Blozan
ENTS,

Yes, truly sad news but not unexpected. Like hemlocks, ash can be saved via insectide intervention. The NPS has begun planning (whatever that means) for the first detection and managment of EAB in GRSM. Also like hemlocks, people don't seem to see saving the trees as a reasonable option to removal. Yes it is costly but way less than removal. You HAVE to spend money so why not take the less costly option? You also gain the benefits of the tree!

Kouta/James
As for beech bark disease in GRSM, the "gray" beech (high elevation race) has been pretty much wiped out. The lowest elevations are generally intact but most of the beech from about 3000' up are heavily impacted. I have photos from GRSM of dead hemlocks sharing the canopy with dead beech. Not much else left in the canopy.

Will

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Sat Aug 21, 2010 12:39 pm
by James Parton
Will,

Why is it the higher altitude beeches are so much more heavily impacted than the lower altitude ones? Any idea?

James

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Sun Aug 22, 2010 7:41 am
by Will Blozan
James,

Probably a difference in vector density and mabye tree physiology. I did a study of BBD back in the late 90's in GRSM and the scale was rare in the low elevations and extrememly dense in the high elevations. The fungus was present everywhere but also in low to absent frequency in low elevations.

The gray beech (high elevation) are quite small (but still old- I took core samples) and have thin bark. The low elevation trees were MUCH larger with thicker bark. However, bark thickness was not measured in my study, just infestation/infection and stand age. I was trying to track the spread of BBD through GRSM via core samples of the host trees and understory suppression release.

As for the beech in GRSM some botanist recognize three races:

Gray beech grows at the high elevations, forms beech gaps and the same as the northern US populations
Red beech is the resident of coves, richer hemlock forests and mid-elevation slopes
White beech is a low elevation race that is uncommon in GRSM but a component of really low elevations and adjacent Peidmont forests

Will

Re: GSMNP on alert for Emerald Ash Borer.

Posted: Sun Aug 22, 2010 9:54 am
by James Parton
Will,

I never realized that American Beech had these three races or subspecies. Besides dying trees how do you recognize BBD? On Chestnut Blight you can often see the orangish fungus on the stems and of course the cankers. Speaking of high altitude beech, I remember some on and near the summit of Mt. Pisgah. These were alive a year ago when I was last up there.

James