FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 17

In the wake of Hurricane Irma, pine trees may be especially susceptible to infestations of these two beetles. This information can help you know what to look for, and how to react:



How to identify BTBs
Black turpentine beetles are large, between five to eight
millimeters or .28 to .32 inches in length. They are dark brown
to black and roughly cylindrical in shape. Their larvae are white,
grub-like and legless, growing up to nearly half an inch long.
BTBs are very similar in shape to Southern Pine Beetles, but
considerably larger.

How to identify Ips beetles
IPS beetles are very small, between two to seven millimeters or .08 to .3 inches in length. Cylinder-shaped and light to
dark brown, they have backs that are ringed with small spines
and appear scooped out. The larvae are white and legless
with brown heads.

IPS Pine Engraver Beetle

Black Turpentine Beetle

How to identify infestations
The initial infestation signs are whitish or reddish "pitch
tubes" - clumps of resin and boring dust on the outer bark
that indicate where the beetles have tunneled into the tree.
The size and location of pitch tubes helps distinguish BTB
infestations from other types; at up to two inches across,
they can be quite large. They are restricted to the base and
lower stem of the tree. Reddish-brown boring dust and crystallized resin pellets are often pushed out of the entrance
holes. When outer bark is peeled back, you can see irregular tunnels, called "galleries," mined by beetles. As heavily
infested trees die, needles gradually wilt and turn from green
to yellow to reddish-brown.
What to do if trees are infested
In forests, removing infested trees can cause undue stress
to the remaining trees and ultimately increase and prolong
the outbreak. Mortality is usually limited unless there is a
large-scale stress factor. If Hurricane Irma has caused largescale stress, the most affected areas can be salvaged by
clearcutting in contiguous blocks. This rule of thumb can
help estimate chances of survival: If the tree has fewer pitch
tubes than its diameter in inches, then it might survive. If this
is the case, it may be worthwhile to treat the tree with an
approved insecticide to protect it from further attack, particularly with high-value landscape trees. Thoroughly coat
the bark of the tree's base up to eight to 10 feet high. Use
a spray can, which can temporarily prevent BTBs from tunneling in. Note that this tactic will not kill beetles or larvae
already inside the tree.

How to identify infestations
Initial signs of attack include tiny (less than .08 inches) reddish or whitish "pitch tubes," clumps of resin on the outer bark
where the beetles have bored in. Pitch tubes may be crumbly or
absent if the tree is badly stressed or already dead upon infestation. Peeling back a tree's outer bark reveals where adult beetles have mined distinctive galleries, which extend parallel to
the wood's grain and create X, Y or I-shaped patterns. Gradually
wilting needles are often the first noticeable symptom. Needles
turn from green to yellow to reddish-brown; at this last stage, IPS
beetles have completed the infestation and departed.
What to do if trees are infested
Selectively removing infested trees may cause stress, and the
presence of a few scattered infested trees in a forest stand is not
generally cause for alarm. In heavier infestations, the worst affected
areas can be salvaged by clearcutting in contiguous blocks.
Unlike Southern Pine Beetle infestations - which require
immediate action due to their aggressiveness - a "wait and
see" approach is often best. Insecticide treatment may be
too costly to justify. Removing trees may cause so much
stress that activity could actually be prolonged. Contact your
county forester with concerns; he or she will be able to tell
you whether you have an infestation and what type of beetles are present. *
Jeffrey Eickwort is Entomologist and Supervisor of the
Forest Health Section for the Florida Forest Service.

Florida Forests 17 Fall/Winter 2017


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017

Executive Outlook
President’s Message
Forestry’s Economic Impact on Florida
Serving Floridians Through Wildfires and Storms
A Post-Hurricane Guide to Managing Invasive Tree Pests
Celebrating the Best in Forestry
Annual Meeting 2017
Log a Load for Kids Makes a Million!
Products & Services Marketplace
Index of Ads/ advertisers.com
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Intro
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover1
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover2
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 3
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 4
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 5
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Executive Outlook
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - President’s Message
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 8
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Forestry’s Economic Impact on Florida
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 10
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Serving Floridians Through Wildfires and Storms
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 12
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 13
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 14
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 15
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - A Post-Hurricane Guide to Managing Invasive Tree Pests
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 17
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Celebrating the Best in Forestry
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 19
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Annual Meeting 2017
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 21
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 22
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Log a Load for Kids Makes a Million!
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Snapshots
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 25
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 26
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 27
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Products & Services Marketplace
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - 29
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - Index of Ads/ advertisers.com
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover3
FLORIDAForests - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover4