REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio — In an effort to detect signs of the Asian Longhorned Beetle, the Ohio Department of Agriculture and the USDA will begin a visual survey in areas surrounding Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Toledo and Loudonville.
First discovered in the U.S. in 1996, there are currently no known infestations of the Asian Longhorned Beetle in Ohio.
State inspectors will examine trees from mid-December through March. They will survey 18 host trees per square mile for Asian Longhorned Beetle exit holes, and the survey will cover approximately 250 square miles across the state.
The Asian Longhorned Beetle attacks several tree species including maple, willow, horsechestnut, buckeye and American elm. While in its larvae stage, the beetle harms trees by tunneling into large branches and the trunk, which can kill a tree within two to three years.
The beetles emerge to mate between June and October. Adult beetles are between three-fourths and one and one-fourth inch in length and have a shiny, black body covered with white spots. Antennae are black with white bands and can be up to two and a half times longer than the body of the beetle.
Infested trees will show three-eighths inch holes in the bark, which are created during the beetles’ emergence. In addition, coarse sawdust may be visible at the tree base or where two branches meet and the crown of the tree may appear thin or dying.
If a citizen finds a suspect specimen, they should contact the Ohio Department of Agriculture Plant Pest Division at 614-728-6400 or notify the local Ohio State Extension office.