ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland Department of Agriculture says a beetle that attacks ash trees has spread to four more counties.

The agency said Monday the discovery will likely to bring the entire state under a federal quarantine for the emerald ash borer.

Secretary Joe Bartenfelder says the invasive pest was recently confirmed in Dorchester, Queen Anne’s, Harford and Baltimore counties.

A state quarantine enacted in 2011 prohibited the movement of hardwood from the 14 counties west of the Chesapeake Bay and Susquehanna River to the Eastern Shore. The intent was to keep the beetle from reaching the Eastern Shore.

Now that it’s been found in two Eastern Shore counties, state officials say they expect the entire state to be added to a federal quarantine area covering all or part of 26 states.

(Copyright 2015 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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