Emerald Ash Borer
A pest proven deadly for trees across the country has been found in East Tennessee for the first time.
Officials worry the Emerald Ash Borer could kill millions of trees across our state. The insect targets ash trees and has already killed many around the country in the past 20 years.
It hasn't been found in Tennessee until it was discovered near a truck stop on Watt Road in West Knox County. Officials think it may have hitched a ride on a truck and is now spreading.
The bug kills a tree by boring many small canals inside. This process will ultimately kill a tree after a couple of years. "Ash trees are very important tree to Tennessee and the southeast region. They're estimating there could be as many as 10 million trees impacted in the state of Tennessee, and a financial impact of $9 billion, so it's something that needs to be taken very seriously," said agricultural agent David Vandergriff.
Vandergriff said if you have ash trees on your property and you live within 15 miles of Watt Road, you should talk to an arborist about treating your trees.