With the warmup and subsequent return of green to Winnipeg’s foliage, the city is reminding people to keep an eye on ash trees.

The emerald ash borer continues to be a concern for the City of Winnipeg; it’s an invasive species that feeds on and kills ash trees whether they are healthy or stressed.

Last year, 1400 ash trees were removed from boulevards and parks because of the emerald ash borer and other problems like cottony ash psyllid.

The city also injected 1100 ash trees with a protectant, a temporary solution while the city figures out the logistics of removing and replanting more trees.

City forester Martha Barwinsky told CTV News 200 traps were installed throughout the city last year, and two adult beetles were found about 5 kilometres apart indicating the beetle is spreading.

Barwinsky also said currently 700 trees are being removed because of cottony ash psyllid, but it’s not yet known how many trees will need to be removed this year because of the emerald ash borer.

“We’ll continue to monitor for the beetle and the larvae this year and we’ll see how many trees we’re going to remove as a result,” said Barwinsky.

Because the emerald ash borer was found within Winnipeg, there is a restriction on moving firewood beyond city limits. Residents are also encouraged to limit the movement of ash tree firewood within the city to slow down the beetle’s potential spread.

Barwsinky said people should contact a professional arborist to inspect trees on their property if the trees look sickly or are declining in health.