Door County trees chomped by invasive bugs

The invasive emerald ash borer is killing thousands of trees in Door County, one of Wisconsin’s top tourism destinations.

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources officials told Wisconsin Public Radio the highly destructive beetles have killed tens of millions of trees across the country since first being spotted in North America in 2002. The beetle was discovered in Door County in 2014.

According to the U.S. Forest Service, the Door County peninsula has 12 million ash trees, which is roughly 13 percent of the county’s tree inventory.

Natural resources department forester Bill Ruff says individual state and county parks in Door County have their own plans to deal with the pest and that the department doesn’t plan to treat ash trees on its land.

He says the borer has no natural predator and that the situation is “bleak.”