Aveneu Park, Starling, Australia

The did the Emerald Ash Borer manage

The
Emerald Ash borer behaves as a constant threat towards Canada’s environment,
and yet for many years, these beetles are responsible for killing more than 50
million ash trees in northeastern North America. The Ash borer itself has a
very particular diet, in which it feeds on ash species commonly known as the
ash tree. These invasive species have always acted as a major problem in Canada,
however, infestation became a lot worse within the city of Montreal. Observations
have indicated that 148 trees across boroughs and municipalities have been
infected with the Emerald Ash Borer. The main target is the red ash tree, which
has been planted around the region of Montreal for the last 80 years. This is
essential to the residents living in the area, as this tree can tolerate the
use of salt used on the streets, as well as other important factors related to
the negatives of the environment. Over 400,000 of these local ash trees are now
in danger of being lost in the next 10-15 years, and this issue becomes much
more notable for the people of Montreal, as well as its urban forests. One of
the more alarming aspects of this situation is that this infestation usually
causes the death of every single ash tree in a single neighbourhood during the
same time. Surveys suggested that typically within 6 years of an infestation
coming to a woodlot, at least 99% of the ash trees arriving are dead. Given the
circumstances that Montreal is facing, scientists may be able to recover those
that were infected by using a biological insecticide known as TreeAzin. The
solution is injected under the tree’s bark, enabling the substance to travel
upward along with the flow of water and nutrients.

Question: How exactly did the Emerald Ash Borer manage
to invade Canada?

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Two
ecological niche modeling methods, Maxent and GARP, can be used to determine
the potential distribution of the emerald ash borer. For both these algorithms
(Maxent and GARP), three different models based on native or invaded data were
created. All the GARP models indicated higher area, and therefore had higher
power than the current Maxent models, in which demonstrated greater potential
and included most infested sites throughout regions in North America. Lavallee
et al., (2015) states that the insect originally from Asia, may have arrived in
wood packaging material on merchant ships and then inhabited regions in urban
forests. Its spread was essentially made by the movement of infested firewood,
and other materials such as nursery stock.

Both
articles demonstrate significant information relating to there arrival here in
Canada, and in general North America. Knowing about the sources of these
infestations can lead to more potential solutions when dealing with this
problem. Some of the possible solutions can be things such as: monitoring the
packages before sending them out, or spraying the packages with an organic
substance to prevent insects from inhabiting them. Having this knowledge and
creating models like the GARP and the Maxent, can overall help to target the
specific locations of where the infection occurs, and from there determine
which kind of approach can be taken. This can potentially create a drastic
change in the number of trees that become infested and die, as the overall
situation could be more controlled and prevent more trees from dying.

More
than 50 million trees are killed due to the infestation of the emerald ash
borer. By obtaining more knowledge based on there arrival and what threats they
pose to the ecosystem can help save trees, as they are a very crucial
investment for the future. Often, trees will live for around 50-100 years, and
within that time, it helps support our environment by cleaning out the air,
moderating the temperature, and providing a (blank) for organisms to prosper.

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