Water chestnut (Trapa natans)
Photo credit: © Hugo Darras/Flickr

Asian Longhorned Beetle

(Anoplophora glabripennis)

Report this Species!

If you believe you have found this species anywhere in Pennsylvania, please report your findings to iMapInvasives by submitting an observation record.

Species at a Glance

The Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) is a threat to America's hardwood trees. With no current cure, early identification and eradication are critical to its control. It currently infests areas in Massachusetts, New York and Ohio. It threatens recreation and forest resources valued at billions of dollars. The ALB has the potential to cause more damage than Dutch elm disease, chestnut blight and gypsy moths combined, destroying millions of acres of America's treasured hardwoods, including national forests and backyard trees.

Signs and Symptoms
  • Visible Asian longhorned beetles. Adult beetles have bullet-shaped bodies from 3/4 inch to 1-1/2 inches long, shiny black with white spots and long striped antennae, 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 times the size of its body.

  • A series of chewed round depressions in the bark of a tree

  • Pencil-sized, perfectly round tree exit holes

  • Excessive sawdust buildup near tree bases

  • Unseasonable yellowed or drooping leaves

Similar Species

The Asian longhorned beetle can be confused with several other types of beetles including the whitespotted sawyer (Monochamus scutellatus), northeastern sawyer (Monochamus notatus), eyed click beetle (Alaus oculatus), brown prionid (Orthosoma brunneum), broadnecked root borer (Prionus laticollis), western conifer seed bug (Leptoglossus occidentalis), and a longhorned beetle (Graphisurus fasciatus). 

 

Download the ALB look-alikes handout.

Habitat

The ALB is known to infest trees found in urban, suburban, and rural settings. Trees at risk include street trees, trees along forest edges, trees in forest interiors, residential backyards, and anywhere else that you might find one of the ALB's host trees.

 

ALB host trees include:

  • Maple (Acer)

  • Birch (Betula)

  • Elm (Ulmus)

  • Willow (Salix)

  • Horsechestnut/Buckeye (Aesculus)

  • Katsura (Cercidiphyllum)

  • London planetree/Sycamore (Platanus)

  • Golden raintree (Koelreuteria)

  • Mimosa (Albizia)

  • Mountain ash (Sorbus)

  • Poplar (Populus)

  • Ash (Fraxinus)

Spread

Even though it has wings to fly, the ALB generally does not move far on its own if it has a food source nearby (i.e., a host tree). Humans provide the most common (and efficient) form of spread for the ALB via transportation of firewood, nursery stock, wood debris, and lumber from infested host trees. So, here's what you can do to help stop the spread of the ALB:

  • Don't move firewood. Larvae and adults can survive hidden in firewood. Remember, buy local, burn local.

  • Don't move regulated material, such as firewood, nursery stock, wood debris, or lumber from host trees.

  • Inspect your trees. If you see signs or symptoms of infestation, report it immediately.

  • When planting trees in quarantine zones, plant only non-host trees.

  • Allow authorized agricultural workers access to property to install and inspect insect-monitoring traps.

  • Know and follow the quarantines in your area and learn to leave hungry pests behind.

Distribution

The ALB is native to China, Japan, Kora, and the Isle of Hainan. It is an accidental immigrant in North America with current quarantines in place in Massachusetts, New York and Ohio. Though not yet found in western states, these areas are considered at risk. 

Videos
Note

Information for this species profile comes from www.hungrypests.com, Oklahoma State University, and personal knowledge from the Pennsylvania iMapInvasives administrator (Amy Jewitt) who spent 3 years as a survey technician for the USDA's ALB Cooperative Eradication program in Worcester, Massachusetts.