Emerald Ash Borer is a Threat to Kansas Ash Trees

EAB Management Plan to Change in 2021:

KDA is changing Kansas' approach to stopping the spread of the emerald ash borer beetle (EAB), following the lead of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In December 2020, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) published a final rule to remove the federal domestic EAB quarantine regulations. As a result, KDA will also lift county quarantines on EAB which have been in place for 10 counties in eastern Kansas and instead focus efforts on education, outreach, survey and biocontrol.

Local quarantines were established to prohibit movement of ash trees and other related items, but those quarantines have been largely ineffective in preventing the spread of the pest. KDA will continue to survey and monitor for EAB, and will direct available resources toward non-regulatory options for management and containment of the pest, including collaborative efforts with industry organizations to educate communities about the threat of EAB and participation in biological control opportunities available through USDA-APHIS.

The county EAB quarantines will be rescinded effective March 1, following the USDA-APHIS rule which becomes effective January 14, 2021.

Comments regarding the change in the state’s EAB management plan can be shared prior to February 20 by email: KDA.PPWC@ks.gov.

Emerald Ash Borer

Kansas Counties Quarantined for Emerald Ash Borer (until March 1, 2021): Atchison, Doniphan, Douglas, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami, Shawnee and Wyandotte

The emerald ash borer is a pest of ash trees native to Asia. It was first discovered in North America in 2002 in the Detroit, Michigan, area. Since then, it has killed millions of ash trees and caused thousands more to be removed to slow its spread.

Since its initial discovery, the core area affected by the beetle  has expanded. It has been detected in Ohio (2003), Indiana  (2004), Illinois, Maryland (2006), Pennsylvania, West Virginia  (2007), Virginia, Wisconsin, Missouri (2008), Minnesota,  Kentucky, New York (2009), Iowa, Tennessee (2010),  Connecticut, Kansas, Massachusetts (2012), Georgia, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Colorado, (2013), New Jersey, Arkansas (2014), Louisiana (2015), Texas, Nebraska, Delaware, Oklahoma, Alabama (2016), South Carolina (2017), Maine, South Dakota, Vermont (2018). 

The current Kansas emergency intrastate quarantine includes Atchison, Doniphan, Douglas, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami, Shawnee and Wyandotte counties to slow the spread of EAB in Kansas. The quarantine will expire March 1, 2021 (see above for details).

The quarantine applies to any corporation, company, society, association, partnership, governmental agency, and any individual or combination of individuals. It prohibits movement of regulated items from the quarantined area, except under specific conditions established in the
Emerald Ash Borer Quarantine for Atchison, Doniphan, Douglas, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami, Shawnee and Wyandotte counties until March 1. 

Regulated items under quarantine include the following:

  • The emerald ash borer, (Agrilus planipennis [Coleoptera: Buprestidae]), in any living stage of development;
  • Firewood of all hardwood (non-coniferous) species;
  • Nursery stock of the genus Fraxinus (Ash);
  • Green lumber of the genus Fraxinus (Ash);
  • Other material living, dead, cut, or fallen, including logs, stumps, roots, branches, and composted and uncomposted chips of the genus Fraxinus (Ash);
  • Any other article, product, or means of conveyance that an inspector determines presents a risk of spreading emerald ash borer and notifies the person in possession of the article, product, or means of conveyance that it is subject to the restrictions of the regulations.

If you suspect emerald ash borer on your property and are not in one of the quarantined counties,  please call 785-564-6698 or e-mail your name, address, phone number and pictures of the suspect tree to KDA.PPWC@ks.gov.  

All ash trees native to Kansas are susceptible to infestation by the emerald ash borer. Trees become infested when adult beetles lay eggs on the bark. The eggs hatch into larvae that bore into the tree. They tunnel between the bark and wood and disrupt water and nutrient movement, eventually killing the tree. Emerald ash borer appears to prefer trees under stress, but is capable of killing perfectly healthy trees.

Emerald ash borer is responsible for killing or damaging 20 million ash trees in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Ontario, Canada. Financially, the United States risks an economic loss of $20 billion to $60 billion because of this pest. A complete devastation of ash trees could seriously affect our ecosystem.

Without government action and cooperation from the public, firewood dealers, arborists and the nursery industry, emerald ash borer will be introduced in Kansas. Preventing its introduction is far more cost-effective than trying to contain it as an established pest.
  • Wyandotte County EAB Find Background

  • Johnson County EAB Find Background

  • Leavenworth County EAB Find Background

  • Douglas County EAB Find Background

  • Jefferson County EAB Find Background

  • Atchison County EAB Find Background

  • Doniphan County EAB Find Background

  • Shawnee County EAB Find Background

  • Miami County EAB Find Background

  • Jackson County EAB Find Background

Do I Have Emerald Ash Borer?

Public Meeting Information

Information will be posted here as meetings are scheduled with public, industry, and other stakeholders to discuss the impacts of the Emerald Ash Borer.

What We Are Doing to Protect Kansas Ash Trees

Kansas has an Emerald Ash Borer Readiness and Response Plan that involves many agencies and organizations. The plan is being revised with the change in management strategy in early 2021. You can read the prior response plan at: KS Emerald Ash Borer Response Plan revision 2-12-10

The Kansas Department of Agriculture and USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service have been helping with a national survey for emerald ash borer since 2008 by putting out emerald ash borer traps in Kansas. Each agency hung purple prism traps at locations across the state. The traps remained in place from March/April to August/September.  As of 2016, USDA has contracted out the purple prism trapping.    

KDA has been girdling trees since the find in 2013 in Wyandotte County.  Trees are girdled in non-quarantine counties adjacent to quarantine counties in the spring and removed and peeled  in the fall to look for larva.

We also respond to citizen inquiries if they suspect they might have emerald ash borer.  We will continue our effort to keep surveillance of areas of concern and other high risk areas in Kansas.

Photo of Emerald Ash Borer Trap in a symptomatic tree      Photo of an Emerald Ash Borer Trap

EAB Surveillance Program

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You Can Help

Since the emerald ash borer's initial introduction into the United States, it has been spread to many areas of the country by campers and homeowners who unknowingly moved infested firewood to uninfested areas where the beetles emerged and infested new ash trees.

You can help slow the spread of the emerald ash borer into Kansas by not moving firewood across county lines. When buying wood for your home, buy only locally grown and harvested firewood. When camping, buy your firewood near your destination and burn all that you bring.

Emerald ash borer educational materials, including ID cards and brochures, are available through the Kansas Department of Agriculture's Plant Protection and Weed Control program. Call us at (785) 564-6698.

Calls us, too, if you think you may have found symptoms of an emerald ash borer infestation in non-quarantine counties in Kansas. If you suspect emerald ash borer symptoms on trees in quarantine counties, please call you county extension agent.