Tuesday, December 3, 2013

2014 Invasive pest awareness workshops will focus on emerging oak pests and diseases

Source: Stephanie Porter, 217-244-3254, satterle@illinois.edu

News writer: Stephanie Henry, 217-244-1183, slhenry@illinois.edu

URBANA, Ill. – University of Illinois Extension has announced the dates for its Illinois First Detector Invasive Pest Workshops covering important landscape and nursery pests, diseases, and invasive plants. Workshops will be offered at six locations in Illinois beginning January 2014.

The focus of the 2014 workshops will be on potential oak threats in Illinois. Each location will have sessions devoted to emerging and current oak pests and diseases such as the Oak Splendor Beetle, Goldspotted Oak Borer, Sudden Oak Death, and others.

A session will also be devoted to invasive plants introduced as ornamentals, such as burning bush, Bradford pear, and Japanese barberry. A discussion will be held on the use of alternative, non-invasive ornamentals that could be utilized within the landscape.

“Early detection and response is the key to managing invasive pests, diseases, and plants. The Illinois First Detector Workshops are aimed at improving first detector training and invasive species awareness,” said Stephanie Porter, a U of I Plant Clinic diagnostic outreach specialist.

Much like the initial workshops in 2013, these in-depth training sessions will cover material that includes:

• Identification/detection
• Life cycle/biology
• Hosts
• Sampling
• Management
• Commonly confused look a likes

Once again, those attending will also take part in hands-on activities, which will allow attendees to examine these pests and diseases in more detail.

“New this year, will be a session devoted to safeguarding and regulation, and how these actions play a crucial role when it comes to invasive pests and diseases,” said Kelly Estes, U of I state survey coordinator of the Illinois Cooperative Agriculture Pest Survey (CAPS). “This information will help to address some very interesting questions that were raised last year.”

The target audience includes certified arborists, tree care professionals, master gardeners, master naturalists, forestry and natural resource professionals, conservationists, and others with an interest in trees.

An application has been made for the following Continuing Education Units (CEUs): IAA Certified Arborists, Continuing Forestry Education Credits, Professional Landcare Network, and Golf Course Superintendent’s Association of America.

Workshops will be held at the following locations:

• Peoria, Jan. 14 - Illinois Central College
Contact: Rhonda Ferree, ferreer@illinois.edu

• Collinsville, Jan. 16 - Madison-Monroe-St. Clair unit branch office
Contact: Sara Ruth, ruth1@illinois.edu

• Murphysboro, Feb. 20 - Jackson County Extension office
Contact: Sonja Lallemand, lalleman@illinois.edu

• Rockford, Feb. 27 - Klehm Arboretum,
Contact: Candice Miller, mille116@illinois.edu

• Decatur, March 12 - Macon County Extension office
Contact: Jennifer Nelson, jaschult@illinois.edu

• Joliet, March 27 - Will County Extension office
Contact: Richard Hentschel, hentsche@illinois.edu

Those interested in attending should contact the host locations above for registration. A $40 non-refundable registration fee covers instruction, on-site lunch, and training materials. Space is limited.

This workshop is supported by an Extension IPM Coordination and Support Competitive Grant from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture and coordinated by Stephanie Porter, Plant Clinic diagnostician and outreach coordinator, Department of Crop Sciences and Kelly Estes, state survey coordinator, IL CAPS Program at the Illinois Natural History Survey, Prairie Research Institute. Additional support for this program will be provided by Christopher Evans, the Illinois Wildlife Action Plan - invasive species campaign coordinator, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and Scott Schirmer, plant and pesticide specialist supervisor, emerald ash borer program manager, Illinois Department of Agriculture.

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