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Progress is being made in the fight against the wooly adelgid in the Smoky Mountains. 8-11-14
Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)
00:02 Each year the Great Smoky Mountains received visitors from all
00:05 over the world excited to see the beauty of the park.
00:08 Unfortunately not all guests are here to take pictures the hemlock
00:11 wooly adelgid business. All he could like insects so it it
00:14 sucks plant uses. And it's native to Asia it was found
00:19 in North America. In the fifties in Richmond Virginia and also
00:23 you know out and far west. In the east did it
00:26 affect the eastern hemlock which is the main species we've got
00:30 here -- it's only a few millimeters long you know the
00:32 little white. Fourteen interior. Starting in the fall. When they start
00:37 -- again. The woolly adelgid was first discovered in the park
00:40 back in 2002. Its size may be tiny but its impact
00:44 can be felt on a large scale. What they do is
00:46 when they land on a place that's suitable. They'll search their
00:50 long metal parts. At the pace of needles and what that
00:54 does is it just the nutri flo offered me. It just
00:59 you know we started treating. Trees for that but first --
01:02 we found that. Use insecticides. As well as part of controlling
01:07 six. That he indulgence and eggs retreated. Somewhere close to half
01:12 a million. Hemlock tree. Treating the trees chemically as a short
01:17 time fix. The hope is that introducing different species of predator
01:21 Beatles will reduce the numbers of woolly adelgid in the park
01:24 and they think. Each have their own unique feeding time civil
01:27 -- on different life stages so the more you get. Different
01:30 species -- at different times they have better control. It's not
01:33 like they're going to eliminate -- build. They are just going
01:36 to. Minimized the damage that they do that trees and a
01:40 lot of the trees you know continue to live and --
01:43 Over the years the woolly -- have speckled once fully green
01:46 landscapes with great lifeless trees. But thanks to treatment the effects
01:50 seem to be slowing. They chemical treatment is something we're using
01:53 until the British series get established start. -- that control would
01:58 like for the long and -- is over so many different
02:02 forest types. That it affects all of them.
Jonathan F Jones, WBIR 8:34 p.m. EDT August 11, 2014
Each year the Great Smoky Mountains receive visitors from all over the world excited to see the beauty of the park. Unfortunately not all guests are here to take pictures.
The hemlock wooly adelgid is a small aphid insect that was discovered in the park in 2002. The tiny insect feeds off of the nutrients in hemlock trees eventually causing them to die. Since hemlock trees have an important presence in every part of the park, the wooly adelgid has become a serious problem.
Since its discovery, personnel from the Great Smoky Mountain National Park have been treating the hemlock trees two different ways. The trees are treated chemically with insecticides and then also through biocontrol predator beetles that are meant to lower the population of the adelgid.
There has been great success in treating the trees chemically, but it won't last forever. The hope is that once the predator beetles have established themselves it will help to control the wooly adelgid and save a large number of hemlock trees.
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