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Carpenterworm in Trees (6/21/12)

Trees damaged by carpenterworm were reported this week from McIntosh County (Source: C. Schaunaman). Several deciduous trees are hosts including oak, birch, ash, elm, maple, willow, cottonwood, and others.

Carpenterworm damageThe life cycle can take 2-4 years to complete. Flight of adult carpenterworm moths occurs from May through August with the peak flight in June. Adult females lay eggs on trees that hatch into larvae after 2 weeks. Larvae are 7.5 cm (2.9 inches) long when mature and bore into the heartwood of the trees. Frass out is pushed out through the entrance hole. Then, larvae pupate near the exit hole with the exuvia (shell of puparium) protruding from hole.

Insecticides are not recommended for control since the moth flight period is long. A wire can be inserted into the hole to kill the larva if few trees are infested. The best management practice is to keep trees healthy and to remove any heavily infested trees. Woodpeckers are attracted to infested trees for larvae.Carpenterworm images

 

Janet J. Knodel

Extension Entomologist

janet.knodel@ndsu.edu

 

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