Protect the Forest from the Emerald Ash Borer: leave your firewood at home

Rhinelander, WI –May 21, 2012: The campgrounds are now open all across the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest (CNNF) and firewood restrictions are in place to slow the spread of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB).  This invasive beetle loves to travel on firewood so please leave firewood at home, unless you live within 25 miles of your National Forest destination.

The firewood restriction is one way of slowing the spread of Emerald Ash Borer, an exotic beetle from Asia that kills ash trees. This invasive insect’s larva kills ash trees by destroying the soft layer of wood just under the bark.

Since 2002, EAB has spread to thirteen states, including Wisconsin and two Canadian provinces. While Federal and State agencies are doing what they can to prevent new infestation sites and slow the spread, the insect continues to be discovered in new locations.  Movement of infested wood or nursery stock being transported from one location to another is likely the cause of new infestations beyond normal dispersal patterns of the insect. The risk of an EAB infestation on the National Forest within several years even with quarantines and firewood restrictions is very high.

Acceptable firewood to bring to the CNNF includes:

  • Wood gathered from within the Forest with a valid permit
  • Firewood purchased from a vendor within 25 miles of the national forest destination or brought from home that same distance
  • Wood that has been certified by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (certified wood can be brought into the Forest from a distance of more than 25 miles)

In addition, state and federal laws forbid moving hardwood firewood out of emerald ash borer quarantined areas.  Currently, this means hardwood firewood that has been stored, purchased, or harvested in the following areas may not be moved out of these areas in Wisconsin: Brown, Crawford, Vernon, Fond du Lac, Sheboygan, Washington, Ozaukee, Milwaukee, Waukesha, Kenosha, La Crosse, and Racine counties. A federal quarantine also prohibits the movement of hardwood firewood out of all or parts of more than a dozen other states and parts of Canada.

For more information about the about EAB visit