Ash borer beetle now attacking Niagara County

Posted at 6:50 PM, Jul 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-31 06:00:13-04

The emerald ash borer beetle continues to cause widespread destruction across the region with its newest targets being ash trees in Niagara County.

Wheatfield is advising its residents that the infestation has reached a "critical stage" because of the large number of dead trees that pose threats to homes and power lines.

The Davey Tree Expert Company tells 7 Eyewitness News that ash trees can be saved with special injections of restricted-use pesticide if the trees are treated early enough before the bug does too much damage.

However, District Manager Andrew Cunniff said too many people are still not aware of the threat and wait too long to call for help.

The cost of getting injections of pesticides can run into the hundreds of dollars, but that has to be compared against the cost of taking down an ash tree that can run into the thousands of dollars.

Wheatfield is now advising residents to report dead ash trees in the public right-of-ways so they can be dealt with.  For the town, the cost of dealing with the insect-killed trees could cost several hundred thousand dollars.

7 Eyewitness News reporter Ed Reilly spent the day tracking the trail of destruction caused by the emerald ash borer.