Forest Pest Outreach

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In 2016, Maine Soil & Water Conservation Districts received a grant from the Maine Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Conservation  (DACF) to present programs for the Invasive Forest Pest Outreach Project – as well as displays at fairs and other events – in 12 priority counties: York, Androscoggin/Sagadahoc, Cumberland, Hancock, Kennebec, Knox/Lincoln, Franklin, Oxford, Somerset, and Waldo. This year we have expanded that outreach to the entire state.

Since 2009, with funds provided in part by a grant from the USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), Maine DACF has been educating Maine citizens about invasive pests. Maine conservation districts are now taking up that outreach to educate the public and municipalities about the threats of non-native forest pests:

  • Those that occur in Maine: hemlock woolly adelgid, elongated hemlock scale, winter moth, gypsy moth, and browntail moth. Browntail moth caterpillars defoliate trees trees and contact with toxic hairs can cause severe dermatitis and respiratory problems.
  • Those that do not YET occur in Maine, but are close by in MN and MA: Asian longhorned beetle and emerald ash borer.

We will be holding workshops and attending fairs throughout the year.

Currently Scheduled Workshops are as follows:

  • Thursday, March 16, 2017 (snow date Mar 17) from 9:30-11:30am at Milo Town Office, 6 Pleasant Street.
    Presenters: Allison Kanoti, MFS Entomologist; Heidi Reinhard, Piscataquis SWCD Program Manager
    FMI and to register: Piscataquis SWCD, 564-2321 ext. 3, info@piscataquisswcd.org
  • Thursday, March 23, 2017 from 6:00 – 8:00pm at Houlton High School, Rm 34
    Presenter: Joe Dembeck, Somerset SWCD Executive Director
    FMI and to register: Southern Aroostook SWCD, 254-4126 or angela.wotton@me.nacdnet.net
  • Wednesday, April 5, 2017 from 1:00 – 3:00pm at Farmington Town Office, 153 Farmington Falls Road.
    Presenter: Joe Dembeck, Somerset SWCD Executive Director
    FMI and to register: Franklin County SWCD, 778-4279 or info@franklincswcd.org

Additional workshops will be scheduled throughout the spring and summer. Check back or contact your local conservation district by clicking here: maineconservationdistricts.com/district-locations/

Forest Pest Workshops are designed to help landowners and users, landscape and forest professionals, and all residents of the state to

  • identify current and potential invasive forest pests and their host species,
  • to understand the threats to our forests and woodlands posed by these pests, and
  • learn how to report suspected pest sightings or damage to trees that may be a result of pest infestations.

All participants will receive an information packet with fact sheets about the major pest species, a list of host trees that the species may be found on, and other relevant information. When possible, workshops will also include an optional outdoor visit to a site where invasive pests or host trees may be found.

All workshops are free, (excepting those that may be part of a larger event that has an admission fee).

Recertification credits
These programs are co-sponsored by Maine Woodland Owners and have been reviewed  approved for the following recertification credits:

  • Professional CFE credits by the Society of American Foresters. Category 1-CF: 2.0
  • Pesticide Applicator credits by the Board of Pesticides Control: 2.0

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Upcoming Events
Look for us at the following events (and check back for more) to pick up information, ask questions, and share your experiences!

  • Mar 10-12, 2017 (Fri-Sun): Eastern Maine Sportsman’s Show, UMaine Field House in Orono
  • Mar 29-Apr 2, 2017 (Wed-Sun): Maine Flower Show, Thompson’s Point in Portland
  • Apr 8-9, 2017 (Sat-Sun): Vacationland RV and Camping Show, Norway Savings Bank Arena in Auburn
  • May 6-7, 2017 (Sat-Sun): Knox-Lincoln SWCD Plant Sale at Union Fairgrounds
  • Jun 3, 2017 (Sat): PCCA Family Fun Day in Brewer
  • TBD: Maine Highway Congress at Skowhegan Fairgrounds
  • Jul 6-9, 2017 (Thu-Sun): Ossipee Valley Fair at Fairgrounds in Hiram
  • Aug 19-26, 2017 (Sat-Sat): Union Fair at Union Fairgrounds
  • Aug 23-24, 2017 (Wed-Thu): Maine Farm Days in Clinton

For  more information about invasive forest pests, visit Maine DACF where you can link to Maine Bugwatch on Facebook and sign up for Invasive Pest Outreach updates.

To report a suspected sighting of an invasive pest, contact bugwatchme.agr@maine.gov or (207) 287-2431.

To find local firewood or campwood, visit Firewood Scout at http://firewoodscout.org/s/ME/