To protect Iowa and Story County natural resources, the Story County Conservation Board, in conjunction with the State of Iowa, has joined in an effort to reduce the spread of the emerald ash borer (EAB) by restricting the transportation of firewood.
Since its detection in the United States in 2002, EAB has rapidly spread west and has been found in several Iowa counties. As a result, in early February 2014 the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources placed the state under quarantine.
Shortly after the state-wide quarantine, the Story County Conservation Board passed a resolution that prohibits the importation of firewood from outside of the county into Story County Conservation areas, unless the wood has been certified or approved by a county, state, or federal natural resource agency. If proof of certification is absent, unauthorized firewood in SCC parks and natural areas may be removed and destroyed by agency staff. SCC staff will provide local firewood for purchase at Hickory Grove Park.
Due to EAB’s wood-boring behavior, this insect (and others) is often transported unknowingly in firewood. Restricting the movement of firewood is an effective management tool because it inhibits the spread of the insect. With the help of federal, state, and county officials and local citizens, we can help protect our local ash trees and natural resources.
To learn more about EAB, visit ISU Extension and Outreach at http://www.extension.iastate.edu/pme/emeraldashborer.html