Hemlock Woolly Adelgid Survey: 2006 - 2014
There are approximately 6.6 million hemlocks in Kentucky, 98% of which are located in the eastern one-third of the state. These hemlocks are all at risk of being attacked by the hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) which is a serious threat to Eastern and Carolina hemlock trees of all sizes. These tiny (1/16 inch) insects cover themselves with a white wool, hence the name. Feeding by this pest causes grayish-green foliage, premature needle drop, thinned crowns, branch tip dieback, and eventual tree death. Since the first report of this Asian pest in the eastern United States in 1951, HWA has become established in about half of the native hemlock range in the eastern United States and has killed about 90% of the hemlocks in Shenandoah National Park in Virginia.
This devastating insect was first discovered in Kentucky in April of 2006. Since then, forests in eastern Kentucky have been extensively surveyed for HWA. These surveys have led to many new county records for this pest.
Since 2014, our colleagues at the Kentucky Division of Forestry (KDF) have established Hemlock Conservation Areas in which they treat hemlock trees with chemical insecticides to protect the trees. You can see the most recent KDF map at the bottom of this page.
Counties found to have hemlock woolly adelgid during the years of the HWA Survey:
Counties found to have Hemlock Woolly Adelgid
Pike Oldham (urban infestation; eradicated)
Grayson (urban infestation; eradicated) Powell
|2014||No new HWA finds during surveys in Lawrence, Greenup, Carter, and Floyd Counties|