Johnston removing ash trees before bug arrives

Published: Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013 11:08 a.m. CDT

JOHNSTON (AP) — Johnston officials have decided to remove up to five dozen ash trees before an insect pest arrives to kill them.

The officials hope that planting a variety of other species will create a healthier canopy before emerald ash borers reach the Des Moines suburb.

The state says the ash borer has been detected in three Iowa locations so far. The beetles are native to Asia and were first detected in Michigan in 2002. Since then the insects have killed more than 50 million ash trees.

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