- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 25, 2015

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Officials have recently discovered the emerald ash borer in eastern Iowa’s Clinton, making it the 20th county in the state where infestations have been confirmed.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture announced Wednesday that the bug has been detected in Clinton, a city located along the Mississippi River. A state official had noticed an ash tree displaying evidence of woodpecker activity, and upon removal of a branch and collection of larva beneath the bark, federal experts confirmed the borer’s presence.

The larvae of the emerald ash borer cut off an ash tree’s flow of nutrients when deposited below the bark. Once infected, trees typically die within five years.

State entomologist Robin Pruisner says complying with the statewide quarantine issued on Feb. 4, 2014 is critical to prevent further spread of infestations.

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