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The Dutch Elm Disease in the focus of the Bismarck Forestry Division



Bismarck, North Dakota – The annual search for the elm bark beetle is about to start throughout the city, and the Forestry Division is getting ready.

Elm bark bugs use elm wood with tightly bonded bark as protection from extremely cold temperatures that can kill many insects, and Bismarck’s Dutch Elm Disease prevention program seeks to protect the elm trees in our region by eradicating these beetles.

The overwintering beetles are eliminated and prevented from emerging in continuously warmer temperatures by removing the elmwood before spring. The department is requesting assistance from the public this year, though, as the beetles will start emerging from the wood next month.

“It’s really important especially this year because of the limited amount of time we have before the beetles emerge,” said City Forester, Doug Wiles. “If citizens know that they have had a large branch elm branch fall in their yard or that they know that they have firewood that they have cut up over the year that’s elmwood to dispose of that right of way. You can wait for us to come by to identify that for you.”

City arborists will start searching the city for firewood stacks that potentially have elm wood in them. Elm wood will be identified with orange paint if any is discovered. Elm wood in the possession of wood owners must be debarked, burned, or disposed of.