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Home > Plants, Pests & Pest Control > Pest Management > Emerald Ash Borer Program > Emerald Ash Borer Detection: Improving Efficacy for Control

Emerald Ash Borer Detection: Improving Efficacy for Control


Funder: Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund
Project Partners:
University of Minnesota, United States Forest Service
Project Period:
7/1/2013 – 6/30/2017


This project is evaluating a range of detection tools and measuring their ability to detect emerald ash borer (EAB) at different population densities. We are addressing whether these detection tools provide enough information to facilitate direct management of emerald ash borer within urban areas.


We are comparing visual inspection, purple prism traps and branch sampling under a range of emerald ash borer population densities.

  • Visual inspection for emerald ash borer by scanning trees for symptoms of emerald ash borer infestation.
    • The most reliable symptoms to look for are woodpecker damage and splitting bark, both of which can be found on the branches and trunk. The best time to look for these symptoms is when trees do not have leaves. These symptoms are not specific to emerald ash borer, so trees exhibiting them are then further scrutinized more closely for tunneling consistent with emerald ash borer.

  • Purple prism traps are attractive to emerald ash borer adult beetles and are used to monitor adult emerald ash borer during the summer.

  • Branch sampling by removing a limb or two from a tree and removing the bark to search for tunneling from emerald ash borer larvae.

Last Updated: August 19, 2016