Invasive forest pest recognition training offered

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FARMINGTON — Invasive Forest Insect Outreach Volunteer Training, in cooperation with the University of Maine Farmington and the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, is set from noon to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 25, at the UMF Olson Student Center, South Street.

The purpose of the free course is to train people to recognize, report and to spread awareness about the Asian longhorned beetle, the emerald ash borer, hemlock woolly adelgid and other invasive tree pests.

These invasive tree pests pose serious threats to the trees and forests of Maine. ALB and EAB have not been found in Maine, but the emerald ash borer is in New Hampshire, 35 miles from the state line, and in Canada. HWA is established in coastal forest locations.

The best defense for the trees and forests is early detection by people who work with trees, those who enjoy the outdoors, and those involved in community education.

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The course is geared for people interested in learning how to recognize invasive tree pests and who are interested in protecting our natural resources including people who work in the woods, tree wardens, park managers, landscapers, gardeners, woodlot owners, land trust members, bird watchers, hikers, anyone who cares about trees in Maine. Participants will also learn how to effectively disseminate information to the public.

Training topics will include:

• Potential impact of ALB, EAB and HWA in the state of Maine

• Current management activities

• Identification & life cycles

• How to recognize these pests and their damage

• How to report a suspect insect

• Other invasive forest pests

• Sharing what you’ve learned

• Host tree identification

• Community Response Planning

The Forest Pest Outreach Project will provide materials and guidance for volunteers.

Continuing education credits will be Bd of Pesticide (3), SAF (3.5) and Certified Professional Loggers (half day).

FMI, register: 207-832-6241, lorraine.taft@gmail.com.

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