- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 9, 2016

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The Arkansas State Plant Board says an invasive beetle that feeds on and kills ash trees has now been confirmed in northeast Arkansas.

The plant board said Tuesday that Randolph County has been added to the confirmed sites of the emerald ash borer, which had previously been confirmed in southern and central Arkansas. The plant board says the insect likely made it into Randolph County from Missouri.

Prior to this year, the insect had been confirmed in Bradley, Calhoun, Clark, Columbia, Dallas, Hot Spring, Nevada, Ouachita, Union, and Saline counties.

In September 2014, the state implemented an emergency quarantine in a 25-county area that banned the movement of ash items including nursery stock and firewood in an effort to prevent the spread of the beetle.

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