Emerald ash borer larvae discovered in Moorhead neighborhood

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has confirmed that larvae found by City of Moorhead Forestry Department staff during annual winter tree pruning are emerald ash borer (EAB) larvae. The discovery was made in early February in the Meadows neighborhood near Clearview Court and Eagle Drive.

EAB is an invasive beetle that has been found in 36 states and the District of Columbia, killing millions of ash trees. Ash species in Moorhead that are susceptible to EAB include green ash, black ash, and white ash. Other tree species are not susceptible, including the many varieties of mountain ash.

Since ash trees comprise nearly 26% of the 26,500 trees in Moorhead’s urban forest, the City of Moorhead Forestry Department had already developed a long-term management plan to prepare for the arrival of EAB. The management plan recommends and implements the most effective and efficient practices to manage Moorhead’s urban forest for EAB. For example, the Forestry Division has been removing and replacing declining ash trees for several years at an average of 234 trees annually over the last three years.

The City has also been proactive in seeking grants to deal with this eventual issue, receiving $220,000 in funding from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) since 2019. These funds have been used to proactively remove public ash trees and replace them with a diverse variety of tree species, as well as planting trees in underserved communities. The diversification of tree species creates a more resilient urban forest for the future.

-from the City of Moorhead's website