A new infestation of hemlock woolly adelgid has been identified in Harpswell.

Officials at the Maine Forest Service and Department of Agriculture say the new outbreak is worrisome because it moved 30 miles up the coast from Saco, the longest jump by the insect since it was first detected in the state in Kittery in 2003.

The woolly adelgid leaves white woolly masses at the base of needles on the undersides of hemlock twigs. Infested trees also have off-color needles and premature needle drop and twig dieback. The forest service is releasing 9,000 predatory beetles around Ferry Beach in Saco and York to control infestations in those areas.

State officials have asked people who think they may have an infestation in their hemlocks to report it by phone at 287-2431 or by e-mail to [email protected] or [email protected]

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