C&G Monitoring and Detection

Monitoring and Detection for Communities and Local Governments

Early detection is the key to minimizing EAB management costs. Communities and governments should monitor their ash trees and learn how to detect EAB infestations. Keep an eye on "Where is EAB in NY" and be prepared to take action as soon as EAB has been detected nearby.


Before monitoring can begin, a good ash tree inventory is required. This should be started even before EAB has been detected in neighboring counties. For detailed information on how to prepare a tree inventory see the PowerPoint presentation Community Street Tree Inventory. Contact your local Cornell Cooperative Extension office for help with training staff or volunteers on how to conduct an inventory.

The Ash Tree Identification poster is a handy guide to bring along while locating ash trees in your community. For more detailed instructions on how to identify ash trees and distinguish them from similar trees, please view the PowerPoint presentation

Once you have your ash tree inventory complete you can begin monitoring for EAB. This can be done by understanding the Signs and Symptoms of EAB infestation. Also, youth (and adults) can help by participating in the 4H Wasp Watchers program looking for and monitoring native non-stinging wasps that hunt for metallic borers like EAB.

Look for EAB

You will also need to know how to identify the Emerald Ash Borer in all of its life stages. Please review the Biology, Identification, and Signs and Symptoms pages of this website. And, consider training staff and volunteers to know the signs and symptoms as well.

You can establish a formal monitoring program in your community, rely on state and federal monitoring (see the next paragraph), or help educate the public so that if they see something suspicious they know who to call. With some training you and your volunteers can also utilize iMapInvasives new Host Tree Survey system. Check out iMapInvasives at http://www.imapinvasives.org/ and e-mail them for information on using the host tree survey to track the health of your ash trees.

Purple prism trap hung in ash tree to monitor for presence of EAB
Credit: Mark C. Whitmore, Cornell University
Your county may already be included in the EAB Survey being conducted with Purple Prism Traps. USDA APHIS (the United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service), in cooperation with state natural resources agencies and others, has instituted an EAB survey to identify the leading edge of known infestations and to locate new or outlying populations. The survey detection tool is a 3-sided, 24 inch (60 cm) long corrugated purple plastic prism-shaped trap that is coated with non-toxic glue on all three sides and is baited with a lure that mimics essential oils of ash trees to attract the adult beetles.

Read more about the Purple Prism Traps at the Management and Control Page.


Volunteers are a great way to get many things done. Street tree inventories; community educational plans, and monitoring for EAB are just a few of the things that volunteers can do. The Emerald Ash Borer Community Action and Monitoring checklist is a good resource for recruiting individuals to help with community planning, preparedness and other EAB related activities. Also check the Take Action! page for more details.

Create a local EAB Team for your community that will coordinate EAB inventory, monitoring, planning and educational efforts.

You can also form or join a Community EAB Task Force to work cooperatively as a region or county. For more information see What is a Community Task Force? and linked pages.