A new and potentially serious threat to some of North America's most beautiful and popular trees is the Asian Longhorned Beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis). Originally from parts of Asia, the beetle is believed to have arrived in North America in the wooden packing material used in cargo shipments from China. Isolated Asian Longhorned Beetle infestations have been discovered in New York, Illinois, Ohio and Massachusetts. Trees favored by the Asian Longhorned Beetle are predominantly maples, but infestations have also been discovered in horsechestnuts, poplars, willows, elms, mulberries and black locusts.
Currently, there is no known chemical or biological defense against the Asian Longhorned Beetle and, in North America, they have few natural predators. In all cases of infestation, the affected trees are cut down and the wood destroyed. Therefore, early detection of infestations is critical to limiting the infested area and the number of trees removed.
Voltree Power Inc. has developed an Asian Longhorn Beetle (ALB) sensor that is currently being lab tested. Voltree Power performed its first data collection exercise in suburban Worcester, MA on September 30, 2011 on ALB infected trees. For more news and information regarding the Asian Longhorned Beetle, please visit the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) website.