Insects in my Firewood

Asked November 6, 2017, 1:37 PM EST

I am a Centennial, CO resident. I have a stack of various woods ready for winter burning. I have noticed small circular holes (1/16" dia) and powdery residue on some of the wood. (see attached photo) I am assuming these are caused by some type of insect. From this description, can you help me identify the cause and whether this is a problem that I need to treat, other than by burning the wood? Is there an office in the south Denver metro area where I could take a sample of the wood? Thank you. Tim Kathka

Arapahoe County Colorado

1 Response

Tim,

photo shows what appears to be pine firewood. The exit holes were likely made by adult Ips beetles. Ips beetles commonly breed in stressed, declining, unhealthy pines and spruces.

But since Ips beetles have already exited the wood shown in your photo, there would be little or no reason to treat the wood. Insecticides are not recommended for firewood insects, and insecticides are not labeled for use on stored firewood.

You'll want to store firewood outdoors until needed. If brought indoors and not burned for several weeks, it is remotely possible that you could see some Ips beetles or other insects emerging from firewood. Any which do manage to emerge indoors can be vacuumed as they appear. Firewood insects pose no threat to your health, will not reproduce indoors, will not infest wooden furniture or structural lumber, and will not damage any other household items.

More details on Ips beetles: http://extension.colostate.edu/docs/pubs/insect/05558.pdf