Cornell Plantations and the Department of Natural Resources are organizing a workshop aimed at training volunteers to identify and report new hemlock woolly adelgid (Adelges tsugae) infestations. This newly arrived invasive insect pest threatens eastern hemlock trees and the biodiversity they support, causing a cascade of environmental changes for some amphibians, fish, invertebrates, and plants in response to the increased light and warmer temperatures. Hemlock woolly adelgids were first reported in the central Finger Lakes region in mid-2008, but now inhabit dozens of local sites. Early detection of new sites is a high priority, and local conservation groups are organizing volunteer surveys as a critical first step in managing this devastating invasive species.
The workshops will feature a presentation by Mark Whitmore on the adelgid’s biology and the threat it poses to local hemlock forests. Participants will visit Beebe Lake to observe hemlock woolly adelgids first-hand and gain experience in detection, monitoring, and reporting protocols. Participants will also have the opportunity to volunteer in the “Adopt-a-Hemlock” program to conduct surveys and report new infestations in local hemlock forests. The workshop will be held on Saturday, March 30h from 1:00 – 3:00 PM at Plantations’ Nevin Welcome Center in the Botanical Garden, located at One Plantations Road on the Cornell campus. Pre-registration is not required. For more information on hemlock woolly adelgid or to report new occurrences, visit www.cornellplantations.org/hwa. Cornell Plantations is the botanical gardens, arboretum, and natural areas of
Cornell University, and is a member of Ithaca’s Discovery Trail partnership. Plantations is open to the public year-round, free of charge, during daylight hours. The Brian C. Nevin Welcome Center is open Tuesday-Saturday from 11am to 4pm. For more information call 607-255-2400, visit cornellplantations.org, and find us on Facebook at facebook.com/cornellplantations.