Invasive insect found and eradicated in Ottawa County

HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) - The Michigan Department of Agriculture believes it has eradicated an invasive insect that kills native trees.

This invasive insect was found in Macomb, Emmett, and Ottawa counties.

It has been known to kill hemlock trees, which are native to the United States. The bug, called the woolly adelgid, has wiped out hemlock populations in other states. The woolly adelgid is native to Asia and is known for its white, fuzzy appearance. It sucks the juices out of trees and kills them.

Keith Eldred, an Inspector with the MDA, showed us a healthy tree in Holland. "The insect would be seen on the branches. These would be completely covered in white, cottony masses. That would indicate the bug was there. On this one, we don't see any, thankfully."

The MDA did find other trees in both Holland and Grand Haven that were cut down and destroyed in 2010. Since then, no woolly-adelgid-infected trees have been found, and the MDA believes the problem has been eradicated.

There is still a quarantine in place, preventing hemlock trees from being brought in from infected states.


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