The town of Winamac is preparing to cut down 87 diseased ash trees. They’re victims of emerald ash borer, which is spread by an insect small enough to fit on the head of a penny. Larvae tunnel under the bark of ash trees and destroy the systems that supply the tree with water and nutrients. This eventually kills the tree. Emerald Ash Borer beetles are indigenous to Japan and are believed to have arrived in the United States about 20 years ago on wooden crates carried by ships. They have since infiltrated the northeastern quarter of the United States. The beetles can’t fly very far, but they have been spread by people moving firewood. Experts say you should never move firewood and should always make sure bark is removed. Also, make sure your wood is from local sources, and burn it where you buy it. More information about EAB can be found online at http://stopthebeetle.info/. Winamac Clerk-Treasurer Melanie Berger says the town plans to replace the 87 trees that are being cut down with another type of tree.
Written by Mary Perren
WKVI News Director Mary Perren is glad to be back home in northern Indiana and on the radio. She’s a North Judson native with more than 20 years of news experience. She’s worked in print and radio news in Indianapolis, Hopkinsville, Ky., Nashville, Tenn. and most recently in Winamac before taking over as news director for Kankakee Valley Broadcasting in February of 2013. Her work has been honored by the Associated Press, StateNets News Association, Curb Foundation, Hoosier State Press Association and IBA. When she’s not sitting in the anchor chair or chasing down news, Mary enjoys shopping for antiques, attending concerts and taking long walks and rides in her vintage Saab convertible, weather permitting. She’s also a hopelessly devoted Chicago Cubs fanatic who still cringes at the mention of Steve Garvey and Josh Beckett and maintains it wasn’t Steve Bartman’s fault.