Can I use traps to capture and minimize the damage done by emerald ash borers if my ash trees become infected?
No, traps are not available to homeowners for monitoring emerald ash borers (EAB). The traps are used only for research and monitoring by entomologists for several reasons:
- They are bulky, sticky and difficult to handle and use.
- They are not 100% effective, and therefore only give us limited information.
- They must be hung very high in trees which requires throwing or shooting a line into a tree and rigging the trap.
- Beetles only fly for short periods of time in summer.
The best approach for homeowners is to monitor the condition of your ash trees and look for symptoms (dead and dying top branches, entire crown decline, woodpecker activity on the bole) and signs (d-shaped exit holes, and beetle feeding galleries under the bark).
Here are some resources to help identify if EAB is attacking your tree:
- EAB Factsheet from Oregon Department of Forestry
- Oregon Forest Pest detector guide
- Oregon Department of Agriculture EAB webpage
- Recognizing ash trees in Oregon, Washington and Northern California
If you feel confident you have EAB, please report sightings at the Oregon Invasive Species Council Hotline.