Saturday, May 17, 2008
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What's that purple thing in the tree?

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[May 17, 2008]  SPRINGFIELD -- The Illinois Department of Agriculture and the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service are using a purple sticky trap across Illinois and other states to look for emerald ash borer, an invasive pest that is deadly to ash trees. Emerald ash borer is small and stealthlike in its behavior patterns and is extremely difficult to detect. If not controlled, the emerald ash borer threatens to devastate the entire ash species in North America.

The traps are purple in color, sticky to the touch and will hang in trees. They are intended to help officials find this cunningly deceptive creature in its adult life stage. The traps will be deployed this May and early June and will remain through Labor Day.

Realizing that these traps may be an eyesore to some, Illinois Department of Agriculture officials are asking for the public's cooperation in ensuring that these traps are left alone to "do their thing." This announcement is to make the general public aware of emerald ash borer and the purple trap. In order for these traps to work, they must be left alone. It's important for the public to be aware of their purpose and help keep them in place.

For more information about emerald ash borer and the purple traps, visit

[Text from Illinois Department of Agriculture file received from the Illinois Office of Communication and Information]

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