Asian Longhorned Beetle

This nasty bug is a major threat to communities and industry in the United States. It's no wonder we need Plant Heroes like Frankie Barker to keep an eye on this guy. Check out the field guide below and then scroll to the bottom of the page to learn how you can help!

Printable Field Guide: PDF

  • An adult Asian longhorned beetle can measure over one inch (2.5 centimeters) long, has six legs, a black body with white spots, long & banded antennae, and sometimes has blue feet!  Photo Credit: Kenneth R. Law, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • Top view of the Asian longhorned beetle.  Photo Credit: Pest and Diseases Image Library, Bugwood.org

  • Side view of the Asian longhorned beetle.  Photo Credit: Pest and Diseases Image Library, Bugwood.org

  • An Asian longhorned beetle larva, which can measure over an inch (2.5 cm) long!  Photo Credit: Kenneth R. Law, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • Close up of ALB pupa in the wood of a host tree.  Photo Credit: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources - Forestry Archive, Bugwood.org

  • All four stages of the ALB life cycle. Top from left to right: egg, larvae, pupa, adult; bottom: full-grown larva.  Photo Credit: Kenneth R. Law, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • Leaves of a horsechestnut tree, which is vulnerable to ALB.  Buckeye trees look similar and are also attacked by ALB.  Photo Credit: Rob Routledge, Sault College, Bugwood.org

  • In addition to white willow depicted here, ALB also affects weeping, pussy and black willows.  Photo Credit: Robert Vidékii, Doronicum Kft., Bugwood.org

  • Leaves from a European white birch. Gray and river birches are also damaged by ALB.  Photo Credit: Robert Vidékii, Doronicum Kft., Bugwood.org

  • Leaves from a sugar maple. All maples are vulnerable to ALB but norway, red, silver, sugar, sycamore maple and boxelder are preferred by the bug.  Photo Credit: John Ruter, University of Georgia, Bugwood.org

  • These are the leaves of the American Elm tree. Siberian and Chinese elm leaves look similar and all three are vulnerable to ALB.  Photo Credit: Paul Wray, Iowa State University, Bugwood.org

  • Cross-section of tree trunk showing the damage caused by ALB burrowing.  Photo Credit: Kenneth R. Law, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • The damage caused by ALB burrowing into the wood of a host tree.  Photo Credit: Kenneth R. Law, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • Cross-section of trunk showing tunnel burrowed from a point of entry in the tree bark.  Photo Credit: Steven Katovich, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org

  • Frass, the sawdust-like materials that ALB pushes out of the tree as it burrows.  Photo Credit: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources - Forestry Archive, Bugwood.org

  • Frass, the sawdust-like materials that ALB pushes out of the tree as it burrows.  Photo Credit: Kenneth R. Law, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • A dime-sized exit hole created by an adult ALB chewing its way out of the host tree.  Photo Credit: USDA APHIS PPQ Archive, USDA APHIS PPQ, Bugwood.org

  • A shallow depression, called an oviposition site, that the adult female ALB chews into the bark to lay her eggs.  Photo Credit: Dennis Haugen, USDA Forest Service, Bugwood.org

  • Tree trunk showing several ALB exit holes.  Photo Credit: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources - Forestry Archive, Bugwood.org

  • Pheromone-based ALB trap.  Photo Credit: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources - Forestry Archive, Bugwood.org

  • Pheromone-based ALB trap.  Photo Credit: Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources - Forestry Archive, Bugwood.org

Scientific Name: Anoplophora glabripennis

Description: The adult beetle can measure over an inch long, has six legs, a shiny black body with irregular white spots and long banded antennae. Sometimes its feet are tinted blue! August is ALB Tree Check Month so be sure to check your trees for the 3/8" - 1/2"round exit holes and the sawdust (frass) that's created when they bore out of the tree to fly in search of mates.

Native Range: China and Korea

Introduced Range: Massachusetts, New York and Ohio

Map courtesy of USDA's Hungry Pest - Pest Tracker

ALB Susceptibility: 

FHTET ALB Susceptibility

Map Courtesy of US Forest Service FHTET

Habitat: Urban, agricultural, and rural areas as well as forests. In its native range, adult beetles infest deciduous, hardwood trees.

Host Trees: maple, elm, horse chestnut, ash, birch, poplar, willow

The Facts: The Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) has a wide variety of host trees and the potential to affect the lumber, maple syrup, nursery, and tourism industries. ALB attacks many hardwood trees, such as maple, elm, horse chestnut, ash, birch, poplar, willow, and many more. These trees represent many billions of dollars to the US economy by supplying lumber, wood products, maple syrup, and tourist attractions. ALB kills young and mature trees by tunneling within the trunk and branches, disrupting sap flow, and weakening the tree. Because this beetle attacks many different tree species, it could significantly disrupt the forest ecosystem if it were to become established over a large area. No chemical or biological control methods are currently known, although experiments testing the effectiveness of some insecticides are being conducted.