Maine hemlocks to be surveyed for adelgids

Posted July 28, 2009, at 8:57 a.m.

KITTERY, Maine — The Maine Forest Service is planning to conduct a survey in Kittery in search of the hemlock wooly adelgid, an invasive insect that defoliates the trees and can kill them.

Forest service staff next week will work with the Kittery Land Trust, which will conduct surveys in hemlock stands in Kittery. The forest service has already conducted assessments of its own in Saco and York, and other surveys in other southern Maine towns are expected in the weeks ahead.

Forest service entomologist Allison Kanoti says adelgids have been found in Eliot, Kennebunkport, Kittery, South Berwick, Saco, Wells and York.

The pest, first detected in Maine in 2003, sucks the sap from hemlocks, causing the trees to wither and eventually die.