The State of Indiana has approximately 9 million acres that consists of forest and timberland. Nearly 90% of the timberland throughout the state is privately owned. Unfortunately, a large amount of this resource is currently under immediate threat by a large variety of wood-boring insects.

Wood-Boring Insects

These insects have the capability of reducing the growth of trees, detrimentally impacting seed production, and posing a potential threat to the lives of trees. That is not all, though. In addition to damaging the overall sustainability of Indiana’s forests and timberlands, these wood-boring pests have the ability to result in an immense amount of damage to homes. In this guide, you will be introduced to Indiana’s most destructive wood-boring insects. By learning about these devastating pests today and initiating the control of the insects, you are less likely to experience the detriment of their damage tomorrow.

The Black Stem Borer

Black Stem Borer - Flickr - treegrow
The black stem borer is a type of ambrosia beetle that comes from Asia. Currently, it abounds in the eastern areas of the United States. It has the potential to infest well over 200 different species of trees and structures that are composed of elements of those trees.

The most commonly infected woods include hickory, chestnut, oak, birch, black walnut, and the butternut varieties. In most instances, these emerge in the Month of May each year. Signs that these insects are infesting a wood source include entrance holes that are relatively small. There may be shoots and long strands of debris that resembles sawdust. This substance may start to protrude from the entrance holes and may start to look like toothpicks.

The Emerald Ash Borer

Emerald ash borer 3 - Flickr - USDAgov
This particular wood-boring insect is also a native of Asia. It is currently found in the northeast region of the United States and is rapidly spreading throughout the State of Indiana. It is drawn to ash wood. These insects become evident in the Month of April. In order to identify an infestation, you should look for exit holes that are shaped much like the letter “D”. If the insects are infecting trees, there will be splits in the bark that are vertical. It is also common to see epicormic shoots, dieback on the crown, as well as leaves that are yellow in color.

The Walnut Twig Beetle

The walnut twig beetle is native to the western region of the United States and is known to destroy the ever-popular black walnut crops. While this insect is still a bit low in the State of Indiana – in terms of population – it is quickly growing in abundance and is considered to be highly detrimental to forests, timberlands, and homes located within the state.

In most instances, this pest is attracted to black walnuts, but can be attracted to other types of walnuts. These wood-boring insects typically occur from the Month of May to the Month of October. Signs of infestation include cankers that are brownish-black, amber stains in wood, and crown dieback.

If your trees or home have been invaded by wood-boring insects, we can help! Check out our Services Page

We also have other articles in our series of Indiana pests. Read about the Mosquitos in Indiana and New Termites in Indiana