Thus far just one EAB has been found in Hannibal.

The ash tree-killing Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) has reached Hannibal.

Kyle Monroe, an advisor to the Tree Board from the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), recently confirmed what had been suspected since this past summer when a member of the Hannibal Country Club staff, who had undergone training to help identify signs of the EAB, contacted the MDC after spotting a dying ash tree at the Country Club that he suspected had fallen victim to the bug.

“The Missouri Department of Agriculture came up and was able to retrieve a dead larval specimen of the Emerald Ash Bore from the ash tree at the Country Club,” he said. “That was enough to confirm the Emerald Ash Bore is in the Hannibal area.”

Monroe is not surprised that the bore has reached America’s Hometown.

“It’s slowly been moving from the Michigan area and spreading toward this part of the country,” he said. “It’s all around us. It was confirmed last year in Kansas City and St. Louis., so it was just a matter of time before it got here.”

Thus far just one EAB has been found in Hannibal.

“I’ve had people call me and ask if their tree had the Emerald Ash Borer and the ones I have seen so far have not,” said Monroe.

According to Monroe, some ash trees can be treated.

“If the tree is already infested with Emerald Ash Borer, then it’s too late,” he said. “If it’s not positive for Emerald Ash Borer there are treatment options. There is an injection that can be put in the tree, an insecticide, that certified arborists can do for them. If they would like home treatments they can contact me at the Department of Conservation (248-2530) and I can give them some publications on that.”

After the tree at the Country Club was cut down it was given a close inspection by MDC personnel. While no larvae was found during the initial exam, other symptoms of the borer were present, according to Monroe. It was during a follow-up check of the tree that a dead EAB larval was found.

The beetle, which is native to Asia, was identified in July 2002 as the cause of widespread ash tree decline and mortality in southeast Michigan and Windsor, Ontario, Canada. The borer is now found in throughout Michigan, across much of Ohio, and in parts of Indiana, Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

The MDC’s website reports the first detection of the EAB in Missouri was in 2008 at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Greenville Recreation Area in Wayne County. Since that initial detection, the insect has been found in 11 counties.

Reach reporter Danny Henley at danny.henley@courierpost.com