White pine weevil diseased tree removal

Asked September 17, 2019, 10:55 AM EDT

My small 3 acre forest has several large white pine trees infected by the white pine weevil. Should I have them removed? Also, younger small white pine are infected. Is it best to remove them or leave them? Great service! Thank you.

Houghton County Michigan

4 Responses

I have to ask, how sure you are that it is white pine weevil (Pissodes strobi)? If you are sure, then there is no reason to remove them just because they have white pine weevil. That insect is essentially ubiquitous in our North American forests. It won't usually kill entire trees unless they are very young and/or stressed by other factors. It will cause the trees to develop a more limby and crooked trunk from the repeated top-killing and recovery. This is actually what gives our Eastern White Pines their iconic structure/silhouette.

The main trunk splits off and the trees look more rounded with multiple trunks. I thought that was caused by the weevil. Is it something else?

White pine weevil does cause that growth pattern, but coming up with a definitive diagnosis for you in this situation is a little beyond the scope of what we can do on this platform. As long as the trees are not showing other signs of stress such as yellowing or brown needles, widespread oozing of sap, etc., then it may not matter exactly which species of insect is attacking them. Many trees can tolerate some level of insect damage. It ultimately depends on what your goals are for the woodlot, whether you want to manage it for aesthetics, lumber, etc. If you'd like someone to look at the trees, you may be able to contact your county's district forester. They are usually housed with the county soil conservation district. They would also help you make decisions about how to manage your woodlot.

Ok.. I'll try that and see if they have a forester that will come look. Thank you!