TEANECK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – It’s a tiny, little thing smaller than a penny and about a half-inch long, but it can cause major damage.

As WCBS 880’s Levon Putney reported, despite their small size, the emerald ash borer’s effects on ash trees may be more visible than the actual insects themselves.

“It’ll get some growth down at the bottom of the tree,” State Agriculture Entomologist Paul Kurtz said of damage done to the infected trees.

Since the insect cuts off growth up top, Kurtz said they first noticed the insects’ damage in June in Burlington, Mercer and Somerset counties– and it could be spreading.

“That’s why we do this education outreach,” Kurtz said.

Kurtz added as part of the outreach, they want residents to know what to look out for, much like educating residents of the Asian long-horned beetle driven out of New Jersey and New York.

“At this point, we are on the lookout still,” Kurtz said, pleading that residents do not move firewood out of their areas.

Nearby on Long Island, New York entomologists are trying to kill the insects as well.

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