Oregon Forest Pest Detector graduates find insect new to the state

In May 2019, an Oregon Forest Pest Detector (OFPD) program graduate submitted a report to the Oregon Invasive Species Hotline after finding D-shaped exit holes and a green insect on a twinberry in her yard in southeast Portland. She recognized the signs as characteristic of insects in the genus Agrilus, which includes the deadly forest pest emerald ash borer. The green insect she found was later identified as Agrilus cyanescens, an exotic beetle that has been established in the eastern U.S. since the 1920s, but had never before been detected in the Pacific Northwest. 

In early August, another OFPD graduate submitted a report to the Oregon Invasive Species Hotline after she noticed similar damage to a twinberry in her yard in northeast Portland. This was also later confirmed to also be Agrilus cyanescens. 

At this time, the Oregon Department of Agriculture does not believe Agrilus cyanescens will be an economic, ecological, or horticultural pest. However, if you do notice any signs or symptoms of Agrilus cyanescens (branch dieback, D-shaped exit holes, serpentine-shaped galleries beneath the bark, and metallic green beetles feeding on leaves in April-May), we encourage you to submit a report

The OFPD program trains volunteers to monitor for and report potential infestations of invasive forest pests. Thank you to these two Oregon Forest Pest Detectors for being on the lookout and submitting reports to the Oregon Invasive Species Hotline! 

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