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File / Associated Press
Emerald ash borer adult beetle

Notebook: Those purple things in those ash trees are trapping emerald borers

Statement issued Wednesday:

Purple panel traps used to detect the presence of emerald ash borer (EAB), an invasive forest insect that kills ash trees, have once again appeared in trees throughout Indiana.

The traps, which resemble purple box kites, are baited with a scent that attracts adult beetles and coated with a sticky substance to ensnare the insects when they land. The Indiana DNR’s Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology works closely with the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) to set the traps each year during early spring.

Occasionally high winds or other weather events cause the traps to fall. If you notice a fallen or dislodged trap, please notify the Indiana DNR at 1-866 NO EXOTIC (1-866-663-9684) so they can reinstall it. Detection of EAB through the traps and through citizen reports is crucial to slowing the insect’s spread through Indiana and other states. Since the immature stage of EAB is frequently moved in infested firewood, Hoosiers should buy their firewood locally and burn it completely.

EAB, first found in Indiana in 2004, has now been identified as being in 32 Indiana counties: Adams, Allen, Blackford, Brown, Carroll, Cass, DeKalb, Delaware, Dubois, Elkhart, Floyd, Grant, Hamilton, Harrison, Huntington, Jay, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Lawrence, Marion, Miami, Monroe, Noble, Orange, Porter, Randolph, Ripley, St. Joseph, Steuben, Wabash, Wells, White and Whitley.

To learn more about EAB, including information for homeowners, visit Purdue’s EAB Web site at or call Purdue Entomology at (765) 494-0822. To report a suspected find of EAB or a downed purple trap, call Indiana DNR’s toll-free hotline at 1-866-NO EXOTIC (663-9684). To view the EAB Rule and EAB quarantine declaration visit:

Journey through gardening season with Rosa Salter Rodriguez (feature writer), Anne Gregory (Web editor and writer), Frank Noonan (copy editor) and Cathie Rowand (photographer)