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Deep freeze may have slowed the ash borer's destructive march through Ohio
The polar vortex that swept the state may hinder the growth of the emerald ash borer population

Andy Chow
Ohio Department of Agriculture's Brett Gates says the Emerald Ash Borer is responsible for killing many trees in Ohio.
Courtesy of United States Department of Agriculture
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In The Region:

The state continues to monitor the invasive insects that destroy trees around Ohio. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, the cold snap may have helped against a major threat.

LISTEN: Decrease in Emerald Ash Borer population is welcomed

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As the polar vortex swept through the country, temperatures in Ohio plummeted, dipping to as low as 10 degrees below zero. While this weather created dangerous and miserable conditions, there may be one positive outcome.

Brett Gates with the Ohio Department of Agriculture says subzero temperatures can kill off a large amount of emerald ash borers, the invasive insect responsible for killing many trees in Ohio.

“Some of those insect larva start dying off and you know the percentages go up as the temperatures go down so when you get around -10 you might see a third of them die—at least according to studies. We don’t know if we might see that in Ohio but obviously any sort of setback would be welcomed.”

Emerald ash borers have wiped out trees in neighborhoods and parks all around the state. Gates cautions that, even though you can’t see the insects, they can be still be buried inside firewood, so it’s still important to buy local and burn local.
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