Albert Lea discusses Emerald Ash Borer strategy

(ABC 6 News) – The City of Albert Lea is working on its plan to fight the invasive bug known as the Emerald Ash Borer.

The insect larvae kill ash trees by tunneling under the bark and feeding, where nutrients move up and down the trunk. EAB was discovered in Minnesota in 2009 and is now in almost every county in Southeast Minnesota.

The city of Albert Lea is being proactive. EAB hasn’t been found in the town yet but is in other areas of Freeborn County. Albert Lea is using grant money to start removing and treating the 1,100 ash trees located on city land. 200 trees have been taken down so far with 70 additions trees to be taken down soon.

“We’re doing this because we know this pest is coming. So, why not get rid of the problem trees and the trees that are in a poor area or that have damage? Or there could be some reason why we don’t want that tree there, so we’re getting rid of them. But we’re saving the rest, and we’re going to treat them, ” Albert Lea Public Works Assistant Director Ryan Hajek, said.

The city plans to great the remaining 830 Ash trees starting in May. Albert Lea residents will need to address the Ash trees on their private property, which is believed to be more than 10,000 trees.

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is hosting a series of Emerald Ash Borer informational sessions in Austin, where the EAB is already present.

Those sessions will be held at Bandshell Park on March 7th and 8th at 9:00 a.m., 10:30 a.m., and 1:00 p.m.

To learn more about the Emerald Ash Borer plan in Albert lea click here.

You can get more information from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture here.