Posted inEnvironment, News, Portland

Beetle connected to ash tree deaths found in Portland

An Emerald Ash Borer. Credit: Angie Wotton | Houlton Pioneer Times

PORTLAND, Maine — Officials in Maine said a type of beetle that’s killed hundreds of millions of ash trees since its discovery in North America has been found on a trap in Portland.

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry said Friday the discovery of the emerald ash borer is likely the result of firewood brought into the area, because the closest known infestation is over 40 miles away in Lebanon.

An initial look didn’t reveal additional signs of the insect. Further surveys are planned during the beetle’s dormant period.

Portland, called the “Forest City,” has done much work to prepare for the beetle. It has about 600 ash trees along streets and public parks. There are also many native ash trees in nearby woods.

In April, Maine announced a quarantine in York County and part of Aroostook County to slow the beetle’s spread.