Wednesday, December 21, 2016

APHIS Adds Forty-four Counties in Georgia to the Emerald Ash Borer Regulated Area

Leah Bauer, USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station,

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is adding Banks, Bartow, Butts, Catoosa, Chattooga, Clarke, Columbia, Coweta, Dada, Dawson, Elbert, Floyd, Forsyth, Franklin, Gilmer, Gordon, Greene, Hall, Haralson, Hart, Heard, Jackson, Jasper, Lamar, Lincoln, Lumpkin, Madison, McDuffie, Morgan, Oconee, Oglethorpe, Paulding, Pickens, Polk, Rabun, Richmond, Spalding, Stephens, Taliaferro, Towns, Union, Walker, Warren, and Wilkes Counties in Georgia to the list of regulated areas for the emerald ash borer (EAB). APHIS is taking this action at the state’s request in response to the detection of EAB in Bartow, Gilmer, Rabun, and Union Counties

To prevent the spread of EAB to other states, the Federal Order outlines specific conditions for the interstate movement of EAB-regulated articles from the quarantined area in Georgia. Specifically, the interstate movement of EAB-host wood and wood products from the quarantined area in Georgia is regulated, including firewood of all hardwood species, nursery stock, green lumber, waste, compost, and chips of ash species.

EAB is an invasive wood-boring beetle that is native to China and other areas of East Asia. The beetle is present in some portions of the United States, and because of its continuing spread, APHIS has established regulated areas that are designated in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) at 7 CFR 301.53-3 and the Federal Orders located at:

The interstate movement of firewood from quarantined areas is an especially high-risk pathway for the spread of EAB. Therefore, APHIS works with state cooperators and foresters to prevent the human assisted movement of EAB, develop biological and other controls for EAB, and raise public awareness about this pest and the potential threats associated with the long-distance movement of firewood.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Spread by trade and climate, bugs butcher America's forests

Insect pests, some native and others from as far away as Asia, can undermine forest ecosystems. For example, scientists say, several species of hemlock and almost 20 species of ash could nearly go extinct in the coming decades. Such destruction would do away with a critical sponge to capture greenhouse gas emissions, shelter for birds and insects and food sources for bears and other animals. Dead forests also can increase the danger of catastrophic wildfires.
Today's connected world enables foreign invaders to cross oceans in packing materials or on garden plants, and then reach American forests. Once here, they have rapidly expanded their ranges.
There is more:  Please see the original article by Michael Casey and Patrick Whittle, Associated Press that is available at   

Monday, December 5, 2016

Executive Order -- Safeguarding the Nation from the Impacts of Invasive Species

Executive Order released on December 05, 2016
Safeguarding the Nation from the Impacts of Invasive Species

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and to ensure the faithful execution of the laws of the United States of America, including the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990, (16 U.S.C. 4701 et seq.), the Plant Protection Act (7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.), the Lacey Act, as amended (18 U.S.C. 42, 16 U.S.C. 3371-3378 et seq.), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), the Noxious Weed Control and Eradication Act of 2004 (7 U.S.C. 7781 et seq.), and other pertinent statutes, to prevent the introduction of invasive species and provide for their control, and to minimize the economic, plant, animal, ecological, and human health impacts that invasive species cause, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Policy. It is the policy of the United States to prevent the introduction, establishment, and spread of invasive species, as well as to eradicate and control populations of invasive species that are established. Invasive species pose threats to prosperity, security, and quality of life. They have negative impacts on the environment and natural resources, agriculture and food production systems, water resources, human, animal, and plant health, infrastructure, the economy, energy, cultural resources, and military readiness. Every year, invasive species cost the United States billions of dollars in economic losses and other damages.

Of substantial growing concern are invasive species that are or may be vectors, reservoirs, and causative agents of disease, which threaten human, animal, and plant health. The introduction, establishment, and spread of invasive species create the potential for serious public health impacts, especially when considered in the context of changing climate conditions. Climate change influences the establishment, spread, and impacts of invasive species.

Click here to read the entire Executive Order