Asian Longhorned Beetle

Asian Longhorned Beetle

Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB), Anoplophora glabripennis, is a serious threat to many different tree species, especially in urban areas.  Tunneling by the larvae of these large beetles can girdle tree branches and trunks, eventually killing the tree.   ALB is native to Asia and has been repeatedly introduced to North America, unintentionally, though wood packaging materials. So far, eradication programs have prevented the spread of ALB to new areas within the North America and successfully eliminated infestations in several areas.  However, due to the devastating effects of ALB infestation it is considered a major concern.

What is it?

Adult ALB are relatively large (up to 1.5 inches long) and have distinctive black and white coloration and long antennae (thus the name “longhorned”).  Females lay eggs into the vascular system of the tree, just between the phloem and the xylem.  When eggs hatch, larvae feed between the xylem and phloem, focusing on the deeper xylem wood as they get older.  Larvae are large and can grow up to 2 inches long.  After pupating, adult ALB emerge from tree trunks through characteristically large (1/2 inch) circular emergence holes.


What does it do?

As ALB larvae tunnel and feed in the vascular system of the tree, they form large holes and cut off the movement of necessary energy, nutrients and water.  Over time, this tunneling girdles tree branches and trunks, killing the tree. Unfortunately, because of where ALB burrows in the tree (farther inside the tree than other insect pests) it is out of the way of most insecticides, presenting a challenge to chemical control of the insect. 

ALB infest many different kinds of trees, with some preference for maples, buckeye, birch, elm and willow.

Contact Information

Thomas Poe Cooper Building 730 Rose Street Lexington, KY 40546-0073