Skip to Main Content

Insects


Emerald Ash Borer

Emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis) is a small green invasive beetle which feeds on all species of ash trees in Tennessee. Symptoms of infestation include crown dieback, woodpecker damage, sloughing bark, and wide spread mortality of ash.

Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

Hemlock wooly adelgid (Adleges tsugae) is a small invasive aphidlike insect which has caused wide spread mortality of hemlock trees across the tree’s 19 million acre range. It is most easily identified by the fluffy white masses found on at the base of needles.

Gypsy Moth

Gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) is a devastating invasive forest pest having defoliated more than 92 million acres since its introduction in 1924. The red and blue dotted caterpillars feed on a host of species however prefer the leaves of oak trees.

Asian Longhorned Beetle

The invasive Asian longhorned beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis) can be identified by its glossy black exoskeleton mottled with white spots. It feeds on a wide host of tree species, boring round holes through the bark; however prefers maple trees.

Southern Pine Beetle

Southern pine beetle (Dendroctonus frontalia) is the major tree killing pest of pine in the southern United States. Management for healthy forests is essential to prevent the small black beetle from killing thousands of trees during periodic outbreaks.

IPS Bark Beetles

There are three different species of Ips beetles (Ips avulsus, Ips caligraphus, Ips grandicollis) that attack all pine species in Tennessee. These beetles usually attack weakened or stressed trees and are almost always found in dying or recently cut pine trees with the bark still intact.

Black Turpentine Beetle

The black turpentine beetle (Dendroctonus terebrans) is the largest of the pine beetles and is most often a secondary pest.  It can be found living in pines that have been previously infested by the southern pine beetle, freshly cut pine stumps or weakened or stressed pine trees.

Sirex Woodwasp

Sirex woodwasp (Sirex noctilio) has been the most common species of exotic woodwasp detected at United States ports-of-entry associated with solid wood packing materials. Relatively little is known how significant its impacts will be to native pine trees as it has not yet spread into the southeast.

Pine Sawflies

There are several species of pine sawfly in Tennessee including introduced pine sawfly (Diprion similis), redheaded pine sawfly (Neodiprion lecontei), and European pine sawfly (Neodiprion sertifer). Pine sawflies are usually problems in new plantings and to tree aesthetics.

Bagworms

Bagworms (Thyridopteryx ephemeraeformis) are named such as they build small shelters out of silk and the host tree foliage and twigs. They are commonly found on juniper, arborvitae, and white pine among a wide host range of tree species.

Eastern Tent Caterpillar

Eastern tent caterpillar (Malacosoma americanum) is a native pest which builds silk shelters in the crooks of trees. Similar species include the forest tent catepillar (Malacosoma disstria) and fall webworm (Hypantria cunea).

Galls

Galls are abnormal growths on tree leaves and stems produced by the feeding or egg-laying of a wide variety of highly evolved insects and mites. Galls may be hard or soft, fleshy or woody, with many different types.

Granulated Ambrosia Beetle

Granulated ambrosia beetle (Xylosandrus crassiusculus) attacks thin skinned deciduous trees in spring, feeding in the trees pith and introducing a tree killing symbiotic fungus. Characteristic symptoms are pencil sized strands of borer dust protruding from tree trunks.

Crape Myrtle Scale

Crape myrtle bark scale is an invasive insect which appears as white, waxy encrustations on the trunk and limbs of infested shrubs. The scale has caused significant mortality as it has begun to spread across the United States.

Hackberry Aphid

Hackberry wooly aphid (Shivaphis cleti) is an introduced insect which feeds off the sap of hackberry leaves, excreting copious amounts of honeydew in the process. Often honeydew laden areas beneath infestation may be covered in black sooty mold growing off of the excreted sugar mixture.

Goldspotted Oak Borer

Goldspotted oak borer (Agrilus auroguttatus) is a small black beetle with six golden dots on its forewing. It is currently isolated to the western United States however it has resulted into complete oak death in some areas and is a serious threat to Eastern forests.

Spotted Lantern Fly

Spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) is an invasive plant hopper with forewings which are light brown transitioning from black spots at the front to a speckled band near the rear, while hindwings are scarlet with black spots. This sapsucking insect prefers tree of heaven however is a threat to a host of tree species.