BOSTON (WWLP) – Federal officials are announcing some good news about the effort to get rid of an insect blamed for the death of more than 100,000 trees across the Northeast.
The United States Department of Agriculture officially declared that the Asian longhorned beetle has been eradicated from the Boston Area. The announcement comes four years after the insect was first discovered in Boston, and following a program in which some 90,000 trees were treated with chemicals.
Still, this is not the end for this troublesome creature, which is still known to be living in trees in the Worcester area.
“While the eradication of this infestation is a victory for all of us, we ask that residents of Massachusetts stay vigilant in inspecting their trees regularly for signs of the beetle,” said Osama El-Lissy, of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
The Asian longhorned beetle bores holes through the tissues that carry water and nutrients throughout trees; causing them to starve and die. They have no natural predators.
As their name suggests, the beetles are native to Asia. They are believed to have first arrived in the U.S. through a shipment of wood packaging material sent to Brooklyn, New York back in 1996.