- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 18, 2015

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Officials have confirmed emerald ash borer in a southwest Iowa county, and they say it’s the furthest west the invasive insect has been spotted in the state.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship did not release additional information Tuesday about the discovery. To date, there have been confirmed cases of the beetle in 27 Iowa counties.

Experts say emerald ash borer gradually kills ash trees. A statewide quarantine has restricted the movement of firewood out of Iowa.

Mike Kintner, a coordinator for the department who focuses on emerald ash borer, says the latest find marks the furthest west the pest has been confirmed in Iowa.

The metallic green insect is native to Asia. It has spread to 25 states since first being identified in Michigan in 2002.

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