Bloomington Extension hosts Illlinois First Detectors Training Invasive Pest Workshop

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Illinois First Detector Invasive Pest Workshop

University of Illinois Extension offers an invaluable program called the "Illinois First Detector Invasive Pest Workshop" in an effort to educate the community on invasive threats to our Illinois landscape. Invasive threats like the Emerald Ash Borer have drastically reduced the number of Ash trees. Another common threat is garlic mustard whose invasive qualities cause it to dominate the forest floor by choking out desired native plants.

The University of Illinois Extension McLean County office, now located at 1615 Commerce Parkway in Bloomington, will be hosting the 2015 Illinois First Detector Invasive Pest Workshop on February 26 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The workshop includes in-depth instruction, hands-on activities and a buffet lunch. Please register at or call 309-663-8306 and talk to Horticulture Educator, Kelly Allsup. A $40 non-refundable registration fee covers instruction, on-site lunch, and training materials. Space is limited.

Gardeners, Naturalists, Foresters and Educators will benefit from this all-day workshop designed to increase awareness and teach identification of invasive species (plants, pathogens or insects) that threaten our landscape.

The 2015 workshops will cover new topics on current and emerging invasive plants, pathogens, and insects. The workshops will include sessions covering viruses in ornamental plants, invasive plants and their management, the Brown Marmorated Stink bug, as well as a session devoted to discussing invasive pest pathways. As in previous years, these in-depth training sessions will cover material that includes: Identification/detection; Life cycle/biology; Hosts; Sampling; Management; and Commonly confused look-a-likes.

"Community involvement is key in the early detection of invasive species. We are very excited about these new workshop topics and look forward to working with participants in learning more about these issues facing our local communities," said Kelly Estes, state survey coordinator.

"After attending the 2014 Training in Champaign, I learned about Emerald Ash Borer and Thousand Canker disease that threatens Walnuts in depth from the experts," states Horticulture Educator Kelly Allsup. Allsup says "The Emerald Ash borer training will help me identify and educate on the spread of EAB in Woodford County, which has not yet been identified in the county."