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Purdue: Check For Asian Long-Horned Beetles In August

Posted On August 15, 2017

By Mike Perleberg

Purdue entomologist request Indiana residents check their trees for signs of the Asian long-horned beetle and report if sighted. Photo by Joe Boggs, Ohio State University.

(West Lafayette, Ind.) – August is the time of year when the invasive Asian long-horned beetle emerges.

With that in mind, Purdue University entomologists are asking people to perform an annual tree checkup for the destructive insect. Doing so could save shade trees in your yard – and perhaps many others.

“If you see an Asian long-horned beetle, you should report it,” said Cliff Sadof, a Purdue professor of entomology. “Early reports by private citizens have been critical to eradication efforts in Chicago, Ohio, New York and New Jersey.”

The beetle has not been found in Indiana yet. Maple trees are the most commonly infested trees, which do not recover and should be removed.

The bug has a distinctive look: a glossy, black body with irregular white spots and long, black-and-white antennae. The body is about 1 to 1 ½ inches long.

Trees suffering from an infestation will exhibit dime-sized or smaller round exit holes in the tree trunk or branches, shallow oval or round scars in the bark where the adult beetle has chewed an egg site, sawdust-like materials on the ground around the tree or on the branches, and dead branches or limbs falling from an otherwise healthy-looking tree.

Sadof also suggests people with pools check their pool skimmers, as the beetles are known to commonly end up in swimming pools.

To report the beetle, Sadof recommends calling 1-866-NO-EXOTIC. Smartphone apps also are available at https://apps.bugwood.org/apps/gledn/, where citizens can report suspected beetle infestations. Reports go to the state first and then to Purdue for confirmation.