The emerald ash borer (EAB) that has devastated ash trees throughout the Ohio River valley and Great Lakes region has finally made its way to the Lone Star State. So far the beetle has been found in only one location in Harrison County, next to Caddo Lake; but over the next few years it will continue to spread. As it does, it will slowly change the face of our native forests as well as our urban tree landscape.
To prepare for the inevitable changes, Holly Jarvis with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, has recently led an effort to develop an online training tool to learn about this powerful pest.
LearnOnline is a new Extension web resource for online courses. The classes are free, and though not yet approved for pesticide applicator CEUs, they may qualify for advanced training hours for some Master volunteer programs. Check with your local county Extension agent or Master Naturalist chapter officers for details.
Beyond getting official credit, the LearnOnline Emerald Ash Borer module is a great way to learn about, and prepare for, this new pest. To view the course, please go to learnonline.agrilife.org. You may be asked to set up and confirm your account via a link sent to your email address. Or, for the EAB course you can simply login as a Guest.
To find the EAB course, click the category heading “Agriculture and Natural Resources”. A list of all courses in that category will come up. From there, click “Emerald Ash Borer”. The course is approximately 25 minutes and includes a final quiz (optional if you want a certificate of completion).
Topics covered include “why should we care about EAB?”, “how to recognize the ash trees hosts of the beetles”, “recognizing EAB damage”, “EAB biology”, “who’s at risk?”, “reasons for hope and control options” for EAB.
Let’s get out there and “gird our loins” to fight the spread of this destructive pest. If you have a favorite tree that’s an ash tree, you will benefit from knowing the battle plan.