The emerald ash borer (EAB) is an exotic insect from Asia that was discovered in Michigan in 2002. It feeds specifically on Ash (fraxinus sp.)
In Rockford the Ash species is approximately 15% of the 70,000 street tree population. It is also estimated another 110,000 Ash trees are on private property.
EAB has been confirmed in Winnebago County the summer of 2010. There have also been confirmation of EAB in the following counties: Kane, Cook, LaSalle, and DuPage.
In an effort to prevent an infestation, Ash trees should no longer be planted. The Illinois Department of Agriculture has issued quarantine for the Entire State of Illinois, prohibiting Ash product movement outside the border. Kane and Cook counties are restricted intrastate.
EAB is spread primarily through the movement of firewood. It is important to remember to purchase your firewood locally.
The City of Rockford Public Works Department is monitoring trees for EAB. If you suspect presence of the Emerald Ash Borer, please contact the Public Works Forestry Division at 779-348-7260.