Black specs everywhere

Asked August 14, 2019, 9:17 PM EDT

Hi! I grew up in Alaska and have been in my current home for 10 years. This year we are experiencing a tremendous increase in little black specs, everywhere. I sweep or even leaf blow our deck everyday and the next day there is a full layer of it again. I’m perplexed. We have never seen anything like it! What are these little black specs? They are not sticky. They are solid and hard. I’ll try to include some photos. We have birch trees near us but not directly overhead. No other trees are within 20 feet of house or deck. Thoughts? And why they are so prevalent this year? Thank you!!!!

Anchorage Alaska

1 Response

This appears to be frass (excreta) from birch leafminers. If you are located in southcentral, the hot dry weather may be favoring birch leafminers by stressing birch trees and making them more susceptible.