Tree Killers: Asian Longhorn Beetle

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  • Common English name: Asian Longhorn Beetle
  • Other names: Asian Longhorned Beetle, sky beetle, or “ALB”.
  • Latin (scientific) name: Anoplophora glabripennis

Threat type

150x150 insects

History in Canada

  • this pest is a very recent arrival to North America: Brooklyn (1996), Chicago (1998), and New Jersey (2002)
  • the Asian Longhorn Beetle probably hitched a ride to North America from Asia in wooden cargo crating
  • in 2003, the beetle was found attacking trees in the Toronto area
  • CFIA declared the beetle eradicated in April 2013 after five years of negative survey results in the quarantine zone. A second infestation was found in August 2013 in Mississauga, ON. This area is currently under active eradication.


  • adult beetles can be up to 35 mm long (1.4 in) not counting the black- and white-banded antennae that are longer than the body
  • larvae are whitish and are 50 mm long (2 in) when mature
  • both larvae and adult beetles attack deciduous trees
  • adults generally emerge in the summer and feed on twigs and leaves
  • eggs are laid on twigs, trunk, or roots and the larva hatch in one to two weeks
  • larvae feed on living tissue by tunneling below the bark of limbs and the trunk
  • the beetle has a one- to two-year life cycle and can overwinter as egg, larva, pupa, or adult

Impact on Trees

What can be done to control this tree killer?

  • early detection and aggressive removal of infected trees are crucial to stop the spread of this insect
  • careful monitoring of areas adjacent to known outbreaks is important to prevent re-establishment
  • in most cases, all trees within a large area around an infection site are removed and destroyed
  • wood, nursery stock, or tree parts of susceptible species may not be removed from the area around an infection site unless they have been treated to kill the pest
  • there are no known natural predators
  • an insecticide has been used in the US to spray trees in the area around an infestation to reduce the chances of spread but no insecticides are registered for this purpose yet in Canada

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