Beetle Eating My Trees

Asked October 15, 2019, 8:29 PM EDT

Dear Cooperative Extension Expert, I am attaching photos showing damage to my tree and the beetle that seems to be the culprit. Can you identify the insect (it is approximately 1 inch in length) and advise the best way to get rid of it. The damaged tree pictured is one of two in my yard, but I've noticed damage to trees in my neighbor's yard as well. None of the trees affected appeared to be sickly or distressed in any way prior to the infestation. Looking forward to hearing from you.

Cecil County Maryland

1 Response

We think the tree may be an ash tree and unfortunately, it does not look like it can be saved. There is a possibility that it was attacked by the emerald ash borer, an invasive insect. The streaking on the trunk in the third photo is called 'blonding' which is caused by woodpeckers looking for emerald ash borers in the trunk. This tree will need to be removed.
The beetle in the left photo is not the emerald ash borer and not the reason for dieback. This is a secondary invader that likes to invade dead and dying trees.