Eight Common Tree-Eating Bugs You Should Know

Tree-eating bugs cause wide-scale destruction annually. However, it can prove tricky to tell which native insects are causing the issues because many of them leave similar signs.  With a wide variety of diseases, it becomes difficult to determine the best course of action. 

For example, black spots could mean something is eating the leaves or be a sign of infected trees. It’s always best to get a professional diagnosis, but there are several symptoms to watch for regularly. In this post, Petrarca Landcare, Massillon’s professional tree service, discusses the eight most common tree-eating bugs. 

1. Aphids  

Aphids are an invasive species that sneak up on you. The small bugs are easy to miss until the infestation advances. Aside from the bugs, you might notice: 

  • Misshapen leaves
  • Sooty mold underneath the leaves
  • Dead or dying plant shoots
  • Poor growth
  • Yellow, sticky leaves. 

2. Whiteflies

Whiteflies hide under the leaves and inside unfurled leaves. Look for the following signs of these tree-eating bugs:

  • Small white insects flying away as you near the leaves
  • Sticky leaves that may turn silver, yellow, or discolor and distort
  • Most common on fruit and ornamental trees

3. Scale Insects

Scale insects love branches, leaves, and fruit. They pierce the leaves or bark and suck the phloem dry. You will notice: 

  • Discoloration
  • Limp leaves
  • Leaf drops 
  • Chlorosis
  • Stunted growth
  • Scales

4. Asian Longhorn Beetles

Asian Longhorn Beetles leave a sweet sap or dust-like substance on tree branches and the trunk. They lay their eggs in the bark, and their larvae tunnel through it. 

When these bugs eat your trees, you’ll notice the following: 

  • Signs of boring
  • Unseasonal limpness of leaves
  • Discoloration of leaves
  • Large gnawing marks
  • Exit holes the size of a pen

5. Emerald Ash Borers

Emerald Ash Borers leave an S-shaped feeding gallery. You will see these packed full of sawdust and excrement. Other signs include: 

  • Small, D-shaped exit holes
  • Split bark
  • Yellowing leaves
  • Woodpeckers 

6. Weevils

You may have weevils if you notice any of the following:

  • Notching or scalloping of the leaf’s edge
  • Leaves with only the central vein left
  • Stunted growth
  • Yellowing leaves

7. Gypsy Moths

The primary sign is defoliation; it starts with one or two branches and can spread to the entire tree. You should deal with this quickly, as one egg mass contains as many as 500 eggs.

They seem hairy and are up to 1 ½ inches in length. The male moths can fly and are brown. The females cannot fly and are cream-colored. 

8. Spruce Budworm

These destructive pests bite the needle off its base and then leave it hanging from the tree with silk. The primary sign is seeing bundles of dried needles attached to branches. 

You will also see: 

  • Bud destruction
  • Defoliation
  • A rust-colored hue
  • Dried needles hanging in silk

Contact the Experts Today!

Are you worried about an infestation and how to deal with it? Do you need to know when to treat and when to remove a tree? Rely on Petrarca Landcare for the best advice about tree-eating bugs.

Call us today at (330) 933-0562 for effective pest control to stop the infestation in its tracks. 

Call Now Button