BISMARCK – The North Dakota Department of Agriculture (NDDA) has enacted regulations to prevent or slow the movement of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) into North Dakota after the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) moved to terminate federal EAB regulations as of Jan. 14, 2021.
Since EAB has spread to 35 states, the USDA will redirect resources toward a program focused on management, such as biocontrol.
EAB attack true ash trees (Fraxinus spp.). The larvae feed under the bark, disrupting the movement of water and nutrients and killing the tree within several years. EAB has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees in the United States over the past decade.
“North Dakota has 90 million ash trees; ash being the most common tree in naturally-forested areas, cities and shelterbelts,” Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said. “While EAB has not been found in North Dakota to date, it has been found in Sauk Centre, MN; Winnipeg, Manitoba; and Sioux Falls, SD.”
EAB spreads slowly on its own but can be moved long distances in firewood and ash nursery stock. The public should buy firewood from local sources and not bring firewood in from outside the state.
The North Dakota regulations will prevent the movement of ash products such as raw logs, firewood, nursery stock, and the insect itself into North Dakota from regulated areas – areas of the country known to be infested. All hardwood firewood, a major pest pathway, will be a regulated article and cannot be transported into North Dakota from a regulated area without having been treated or inspected by state officials of that state. The rule also requires firewood to be labeled to county of origin if from partially infested states.
The NDDA will be launching a local firewood finder to help North Dakotans and visitors easily find local firewood. The platform will be free for users to post firewood for sale. Firewood sellers should fill out the form at www.nd.gov/ndda/firewood-finder to submit their information.