DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A beetle that destroys ash trees has been confirmed in Muscatine County, making it the 11th county in Iowa to have an infestation of the emerald ash borer.
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says a larva collected in Muscatine County has been positively identified as the bug.
A statewide quarantine restricting the movement of hardwood, firewood, ash logs, wood chips, and ash tree nursery stock remains in effect. State entomologists say moving firewood is the quickest way to start an infestation in an unaffected county.
The beetle has been found in Cedar, Des Moines, Henry, Jefferson, Muscatine, and Wapello counties in southeast Iowa. It's been found in Union County in southwest Iowa and Jasper County in central Iowa. Further north, it's confirmed in Allamakee, Black Hawk, and Bremer counties.