Boston beetles likely from Worcester

Posted by Jeremy Shulkin

Maybe you heard that over the weekend six trees in Boston were found infested by the Asian Longhorn Beetle.

Today we found out from Rhonda Santos, a spokeswoman for the USDA, that it’s very likely those beetles came from Worcester. “What we’re thinking is it was human movement of wood from the Worcester area” by someone visiting the hospital, she suggested. The USDA has ruled out the possibility that the insects came from a tree nursery because the ages of the trees versus the length of time the ALB has been feasting on them don’t correlate.

Santos says that so far it looks like the infestation hasn’t spread beyond the six trees on the Faulkner Hospital property, and DNA analysis will be performed on the ALB to verify he’s the father the Worcester-Boston link.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Boston beetles likely from Worcester

  1. Could we get a Maury Povich moment of drama, followed by a fistfight that involves a studio audience?

  2. So you mean when they said not to take wood from the infected area in Worcester they were trying to prevent spreading of the insect? Here I was thinking they were trying to limit my civil rights to carry a club for self defense.

  3. Colin

    Ok Folks,

    I was chuckling on this post!

    Who brings firewood with them when going to the hospital? I have yet to see the First Class rooms with a working fireplace (mind the oxygen tank will you please?), or the picnic tables and outdoor fireplaces on the hospital grounds for picnics and camping.

    How many folks from Worcester go to a hospital in Jamaica Plain statically? A few, surely, but more than that? And the odds that they brought a pickup of firewood with them for their visit? Well, at least I can laugh at the image in my head.

    Don’t get me wrong, it is entirely possible that they are escapee ALB from Worcester, I totally get that, but:

    ““What we’re thinking is it was human movement of wood from the Worcester area” by someone visiting the hospital…” ?

    I don’t know. That seems a bit thin as a premise.

    I will wait for the paternity test to see if they are ours, and then we can hunt for causes less like a summer blockbuster premise than bringing a load of infested firewood to the hospital.

    The story will keep getting more interesting, (landscapers and arborists who work or attend an event at Arnold Arboretum and did tree work in Worcester is my best totally uneducated guess?) and regardless of the humor, my deepest sympathies to the folks of Boston and Jamaica Plain. This isn’t the sort of thing you would wish on anyone. Good luck and may it only be the 6 trees.

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