News Release


Purple prism traps that resemble a three-sided box kite will again be seen in trees throughout the state as the West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA) continues surveillance for the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), a non-native, wood-boring beetle that has killed tens of millions of ash trees in the eastern United States and Canada. EAB has been discovered in Fayette, Morgan, Roane, Calhoun, Nicholas and Raleigh Counties in West Virginia. The goal of this year’s trapping program is to locate new infestations within the state for possible biological control agent releases.

“We strongly suspect that EAB entered the state on firewood brought by campers,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Gus R. Douglass. “Other pests can also be artificially transported by individuals moving firewood, so we are urging all visitors to buy their firewood near where they camp and not transport it from one area to another. If they do bring firewood with them it should all be burned before they leave for home.”

The entire state is under a Federal EAB Quarantine. This means that no firewood (except from evergreen trees), ash logs, ash seedlings, ash bark and other regulated articles can be moved outside the state without federal certification.

The purple traps are coated with an adhesive that captures insects when they land. The color is thought to be attractive to EAB, and is relatively easy for humans to spot among the foliage. At times these traps can be blown out of the trees. To report a trap that is down or to get information on EAB, please contact the WVDA’s Plant Industries Division at 304-558-2212. You can also obtain more information on EAB at

The West Virginia Department of Agriculture protects plant, animal and human health through a variety of scientific, regulatory and consumer protection programs, as mandated by state law. The Commissioner of Agriculture is one of six statewide elected officials in West Virginia. For more information, visit

SOURCE: West Virginia Department of Agriculture

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