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Federal change in invasive beetle fight now official

Emerald ash borer adult with feeding damage to ash leaf.
Emerald ash borer adult with feeding damage to ash leaf.(Credit: Debbie Miller, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org)
Published: Jan. 20, 2021 at 6:24 AM EST
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture has finalized a controversial change in tactics in the battle against the emerald ash borer.

There were rules between different states about moving ash wood and violations were investigated. The USDA now says those rules aren’t effective anymore, as the bug has made its way into 35 states and D.C. The change doesn’t mean much for Vermont, which still has rules about anyone moving or selling wood with pests, along with recommendations about how to safely do it.

Instead, the USDA now plans to control the borer by releasing tiny parasitic wasps that kill the beetles.

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