Firewood from Texas to Kentucky?

Dear Don’t Move Firewood-

Can I transport firewood from Texas to Kentucky?

Yours, Road Trip Planner

Dear Road Trip Planner,

The state of Kentucky strongly advises not bringing firewood into Kentucky from out of state, regardless of which state it is coming from. In quite a few cases, it is illegal to transport firewood from Texas to Kentucky. For instance, it is illegal to bring firewood from out of state into any Kentucky State Park, and also against regulations to bring firewood from out of state into most National Parks within Kentucky. Further, it would be illegal to bring firewood that was stored outside on the ground from any federally quarantined areas for Imported Red Fire Ant, and the quarantined area for this pest is basically the entirety of Texas aside from the panhandle and the 9 west-most counties.

When you look at all these restrictions put together, you can see that it is either illegal, or just rather ill advised, to bring firewood from Texas to Kentucky. Instead, I’d urge you to use your Texas firewood in Texas, and purchase firewood upon reaching your destination in Kentucky. Good luck and thank you for asking!

For more information, visit:

Missouri Invasive Forest Pest Council outreach projects with Don’t Move Firewood

Guest blog by Robbie Doerhoff, Forest Health Specialist, Missouri Dept. of Conservation 

We’ve all heard Ben Franklin’s famous adage “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” I doubt these wise words were inspired by tree-killing insects and diseases, but they do sum up how we approach invasive forest pests in Missouri. The past events and infestations in nearby states with emerald ash borer (EAB), gypsy moth, and Asian longhorned beetle have taught us just how expensive—both ecologically and economically—that “pound of cure” can be, and how  incredibly important it is to keep those invasive forest pests out of Missouri in the first place. So, what’s Missouri’s “ounce of prevention”? Outreach! A large component of keeping pests out of Missouri is educating the people who may be bringing them into the state.

download the poster here

The pests we are most concerned about in Missouri are EAB, thousand cankers disease of black walnut, Asian longhorned beetle, and gypsy moth. At this time, EAB is the only pest on this list that’s been detected in Missouri, and the entire state is now under the federal EAB quarantine. However, EAB has been detected in only 15 of our 114 counties, which means the other 99 counties are not currently known to have infested trees. Slowing the spread in Missouri  is as important now as ever.   

Missouri’s 2016 plans for forest pest and firewood outreach include :

  • Developing a first detector program focused on forest pests
  • Using billboards in several locations around the state 
  • Publishing large ads in Rural Missouri magazine (monthly circulation of 550k)
  • Distributing our new firewood pest rack card in state parks and nature centers
  • Displaying our new poster in both public and private campgrounds around the state
  • Hosting the “Alien Invaders” booth at the Missouri State Fair in August
  • Visiting with the woodworking community on regulations regarding walnut wood movement

Forest pest outreach within Missouri is coordinated by the Missouri Invasive Forest Pest Council, a group of agencies that partner on all activities related to forest pests. Our group includes the Missouri Departments of Agriculture, Conservation, and Natural Resources, USDA-APHIS-PPQ, USDA-NRCS, USDA Forest Service, and the University of Missouri Extension. Many of our 2016 outreach activities are funded through a cooperative agreement with USDA-APHIS.

Outreach materials we plan to use this year include four matching products (billboard, advertisement, poster, rack card) created for us by Don’t Move Firewood. We also plan to give away educational materials provided by Don’t Move Firewood, including stickers and insect tattoos.

 

Webinar: Treating Firewood is a Hot Topic, on February 25th

Join us for the 1st edition of the 2016 FOCI webinar series, “Treating Firewood is a Hot Topic: seasoning, solarizing, kiln drying, and heat treatment” on February 25th, 2016 at 1pm Eastern. We will be discussing the various effective (and potentially ineffective) ways that firewood is treated in order to prevent the spread of forest pests. This webinar is held in coordination with NISAW 2016. We will bring in several experts to talk about their knowledge area within the realm of treating firewood, including:

  • Denise Haffner, USDA APHIS PPQ
  • Katy Longen, Minnesota Dept of Agriculture
  • Tyson Emery, Florida Dept of Agriculture and Consumer Services
  • Tom Coleman, US Forest Service

UPDATE: Thank you to the 75 attendees of the webinar for excellent questions and your attention. You can now view the webinar recording on YouTube – click here: Treating Firewood is a Hot Topic.

 

Utah working to prevent forest pests

Guest blog by Cami Cannon, Publication Assistant at USU Cooperative Extension Utah Pests

Although Utah is known more for its red rock than for its forests, a third of the state is covered with over 15 million acres of beloved trees. From the Ponderosa pines scattered through Bryce Canyon National Park to the lodgepole pine forests of the Uintas, there are millions of trees that provide critical benefits and are loved by tourists and locals alike. Therefore, the state of Utah is eager to prevent invasive insects and diseases from attacking forested areas. The most concerning pests for Utah’s natural and urban forests are the emerald ash borer, gypsy moth, and Asian longhorned beetle.

The Utah Plant Pest Diagnostic Lab (UPPDL) at Utah State University conducts workshops on invasive species, targeting forestry and industry personnel. This spring, they are also in the process of creating a First Detector program for Utah, targeting Master Gardeners and extension staff, and hope to include (in the future) volunteer activities to assist with their prevention and detection efforts. As part of this program, a user friendly First Detector Guide will be published to help spread the word. The guide will provide information on detection, biology of species, methods of prevention, and contact resources in case new invasive species are suspected. In addition, eye-catching posters, pamphlets and door hangers describing invasive pests and the threat that they pose to Utah’s agricultural and natural resources, along with posters about proper firewood practices provided by the Don’t Move Firewood campaign, are being designed and will be disseminated to all interested parties.

        

Click on the thumbnails to open their description and download a PDF of the custom Utah version of these Don’t Move Firewood materials

The UPPDL works in close collaboration with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food, who conducts surveys for exotic wood-borers and Asian defoliators (including gypsy moth), and conduct several outreach programs of their own. Many thanks to our partners for their hard work this year.

 

 

Invasive Species: What Boy and Girl Scouts Can Do

Guest Blog by William David, Eagle Scout 2015, Boy Scout Troop 91, Daniel Boone Council, Asheville North Carolina

It is important for Boy and Girl Scouts to learn about invasive species. An invasive species is a living organism that is not native to the ecosystem that it is in and is causing harm there. This can be an amphibian, fish, plant, insect, fungus, or bacteria. They can harm our environment, health, and economy. Invasive species do not have to come from another country; they can cause damage when transported to a different area of the same country. Invasive species are mostly spread unintentionally by human activity. This includes movement by people or the transport of goods. Examples include boats, transport of wood products, transport of non-native plants, and release of pets. Invasive species and their introduction are a serious threat to native wildlife.

According to The National Wildlife Foundation and others, over 40% of endangered or threatened species are at risk mainly due to an invasive species. They also calculate the economic cost of invasive species at billions of dollars each year in the U.S and trillions worldwide. Invasive species often lack natural predators. They usually grow and spread quickly, and can soon take over a native area. They do this in several different ways. Invasive species directly threaten native species by preying on them, out-competing them for food, and carrying disease or preventing reproduction. Indirect threats of invasive species include changing food webs, decreasing biodiversity and changing ecosystem conditions such as soil. In our scouting activities there are many opportunities to help prevent the spread of invasives.

The most effective way to fight invasive species is to prevent their introduction. Make sure you plant plants that are native to your area or replace invasive plants with native ones. Scouts can volunteer and help plan projects to remove invasive species. There are great resources online to find out what is native in your area. There are also nurseries that only sell native plants. The Boy Scouts of America National Conservation and Environmental Task Force has provided The BSA Invasive Species Management Plan Template for use in maintaining scout properties and camps nationwide. Learn to identify the invasive pests that threaten trees in your area. There are great online and interactive resources to do this as well. Report any invasive pests seen to your county extension agent. Another very important way to prevent invasive species is to clean off “hitchhikers”. Regularly cleaning your vehicle (and its tires), boat, shoes, and outdoors gear and equipment will remove pests that can latch on and prevent their spread to new places. This is also why we should not transport fruits, vegetables, or plants when we travel.

One of the most important preventions is not to move firewood. Firewood houses invasive pests. When we move firewood, the pests can travel and invade healthy ecosystems. The estimated maximum distance firewood should be moved is ten miles. Huge damage has occurred to tree populations by pests transported in firewood. Just a few examples include the destruction of Chestnut, Ash, Walnut, and Hemlock trees.

It is also important for scouts to help educate others about invasive species and how to prevent their spread. Below are two educational posters I have made featuring The Nature Conservancy’s Don’t Move Firewood Campaign that scouts can use to educate fellow scouts and others. Please ask your Boy Scout or Girl Scout Leaders and Council to include these educational resources in their newsletters, websites, social media posts, and leader email distribution lists. Following these prevention principles is part of following our Outdoor Code and a key Scouting Principle: the commitment to Leave No Trace. For more information on Scouting conservation, visit the Scout Conservation Help Wanted facebook page.

Download & Share these posters:

 

 

 

Ohio’s Firewood for Home Heating Infographic

We are excited to release a new version of our Home Heating Infographic- the Ohio version! Made for people in Ohio that heat their home or cabin with wood, this infographic details how firewood is an inexpensive and efficient way to get through the cold months for many Ohioans. Here at Don't Move Firewood, we support the use of firewood when properly sourced (locally harvested, or heat treated, and always understand and comply with any pest related quarantines or restrictions). 

 

Download options: Full Resolution PDF| Low Resolution JPG for Web or Powerpoint

Scroll to the bottom of this page for social media friendly image snippets

 

We could not have made such an informative resource without the information from these excellent sources (listed by roughly three rows of content):

Top left to right:

Middle left to right:

  • The Nature Conservancy, 2010. A Survey of Pests, Pathogens, and the Public. For complete information on this survey, contact Leigh Greenwood at LGreenwood at TNC.org.
  • Diss-Torrance, A, Peterson, K, Robinson, C. 2015 Changing movement of firewood by campers: an eight year study of effect of regulation and education, in prep. Access a recent webinar covering this research on the Don't Move Firewood blog or email Andrea Diss-Torrance, Invasive Forest Insects Program Coordinator for the State of Wisconsin, for more information.

Bottom left to right:

 

Do you love this graphic so much that you'd like to share a little piece of it on a social media account? Here are four pieces for you to choose from! 

 

 

 

Webinar: Encouraging behavior change via social media outreach

Join us for the first FOCI webinar of the new year (and the last webinar within our 2015 series, even though it is in January!), Encouraging behavior change via social media outreach on January 20th, 2016 at 2pm Eastern. Learn about how groups, organizations, and agencies can use social media to encourage behavior change. We’ll explore a few examples of cutting edge social media accounts within the world of forest pest outreach, work through some best practices, and encourage networking between social accounts administrators. Ideas from beyond just the firewood topic will be explored, including examples from the non-profit world, various government agency strategies, and more.

UPDATE: To download a PDF of the slides presented, click here. Unfortunately the presentation was accidentally not recorded as had been planned. Please contact Leigh at the email address within the PDF if you have questions.