VAN BUREN, Ohio - The Ohio Department of Agriculture yesterday added Hancock County's Allen Township to its list of areas facing severe restrictions for ash wood.
Anyone caught moving ash trees, branches, wood chips, bark, and nonconiferous firewood out of restricted areas could be fined up to $4,000, state agriculture officials warned.
Allen Township was added to the list of areas facing scrutiny because of the discovery of infested ash trees in northern Hancock, where emerald ash borers were found. Ohio has a statewide quarantine on ash wood, which prohibits the movement of ash materials and firewood from Michigan into Ohio.
In addition to Hancock County's Allen Township, the most restricted parts of the Ohio quarantine include Lucas County west of North Curtice Road; Fulton County east of State Rt. 109; Henry County east of State Rt. 109 and north of the Maumee River; Defiance County's Hicksville Township, plus Wood County's Lake Township east of Tracy Road and north of State Rt. 795, and Wood County's Henry Township.
Infested ash trees typically die in three to five years, as the beetle's larval offspring grows and wiggle their way beneath the tree bark. The worm-like larvae slowly suffocate trees by robbing them of nutrients, causing leaves to fall off. Adults emerge in their beetle form by mid-May and fly to other host trees until September.
In a related matter, the state agriculture department will host the final emerald ash borer workshop for the Toledo area at 6 p.m. Thursday in the former Martin School, 10 South Holland-Sylvania Rd.
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