Aerial View of the City of Peterborough

Emerald Ash Borer

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The Beetle

Emerald Ash Borer Beetle (Image by

Peterborough currently faces a threat to its public and private ash tree resource. An invasive and exotic pest known as the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) has infested and killed millions of ash trees in the USA, Southern Ontario and Quebec. It is generally acknowledged as the single most destructive forest pest that has entered North America. EAB is not directly harmful to humans and is entirely specific to ash trees (not Mountain-ash). You can view an introductory video about EAB produced by the Eastern Ontario Model Forest (EOMF) here

Ash Trees

Ash Trees in Peterborough (Photo by Paul Hambidge)Ash trees are an important native tree species that grow quickly and thrive in Southern Ontario, and, historically, are a major component of woodlots, fence rows, and along water courses. The growth habit and adaptability of the ash tree makes it one of the key species for planting along our urban streets.

You can view the City's Right-of-Way Ash trees on our interactive map.

Peterborough Urban Forests

The City of Peterborough has an estimated 2600 ash trees along City streets. Additionally, it is estimated that there are approximately 4500 ash trees located within the City’s parks and open space areas. In total, ash represents about 10% of the City’s total tree canopy and ash trees have also been a popular choice for planting in many private property landscapes within the City.

Current Threat

Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) was confirmed in the City of Peterborough in 2014 and again in 2015. The City has taken measures through a strategy of treatments and removals to slow the spread and build-up of EAB in the City. It is inevitable that the EAB will increase in numbers and ash trees will begin to die in the coming years. Through a program of public outreach and partnering with TreeCanada the City is encouraging private ash tree owners to consider treatment or removal and replacement of their ash trees.