Volume 76, Number 4 | June 14 - 20 2006

Villager photos by Margaret Morton

Beetlemania

An arborist inspected trees in Union Square earlier this month for signs of infestation by Asian long-horned beetles. A Parks Department spokesperson said the Union Square trees were determined to be free of the beetles, but that the bugs had been found in other Manhattan trees as recently as April. The beetles first appeared in Brooklyn in 1996. Since then, Parks has found them in 6,061 trees, which all have been cut down, chipped and burned. Signs of infestation are round, dime-sized holes, or small pits, in a tree and sawdust at the base of the tree or on its limbs. The beetles are 1.5 inches long, shiny black with white spots with long antennae with black and white bands. Parks is working with other agencies to try to eradicate the tree-killing bugs. People who suspect the beetles’ presence in a tree or trees, should call the Asian Long-horned Beetle Co-operative Eradication Program at 1-866-265-0301.

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