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Asian Longhorned Beetle Strikes Again

The devastating Asian Longhorned Beetle has been found on more trees in Massachusetts.

News broke earlier this week that more Asian Longhorned Beetle infestations were found in Worcester, the same area that was devasted by the ALB just a few years ago. The Asian Longhorned Beetle is a nasty pest, with the ability to kill a large number of trees quickly by boring through the trees. In Worcester, the ALB infested about 90 Norway, Sugar, and Red Maples throughout two neighborhoods.ALB Exit Hole

Though we have yet to see an infestation of ALB on the North Shore, the damage done in Worcester and Jamaica Plain over the past few years is enough to keep Arborists on their toes. Carpenter Costin's Certified Arborists are continually on the look out for signs of ALB infestation, and we encourage homeowners to keep an eye out for ALB exit holes, as seen in the image.

In order to prevent Asian Longhorned Beetle infestations, multi-year treatment programs are recommended. Since 2008 more than 30,000 trees have been removed in the Worcester area due to ALB infestation. We can't let that happen in our area! Consult with an Arborist to ensure that your trees stay ALB free.

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Asian Longhorned Beetle Decimates Local Trees

Invasive Insects Threaten Hardwood Trees

The Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) is an invasive insect from Asia that is a serious threat to hardwood trees (trees that lose their foliage after growing season) in the United States. These trees include maple, elm, willow, birch, horsechestnut and poplar. During its infant stage, the insect bores into a tree's heartwood and feeds on the nutrients. The tunneling can cause extensive damage, which will eventually kill the tree. The insect is approximately 1 - 1.5 inches in length with antennae as long as the body itself. Although they can fly up to 400 yards, they tend to lay eggs in the same tree they emerged as adults.

The Adult female, active primarily during the summer and early fall, can chew 35 to 90 depressions into the bark of the host tree. One egg is laid at each site, which hatches in 10-15 days. The resulting offspring tunnel into the woody tissue of the tree, where it feeds and continues to develop over the winter. In the spring, the offspring build a hard case to develop in. When summer comes, they chew their way out of the tree leaving perfectly round exit holes of ¼ to ½ inch. They then feed on the leaves and twigs of the tree, before starting the cycle over again.

Getting rid of the beetles is primarily accomplished through detection and removal of the host tree. If you encounter these beetles, you are urged to contact the U.S. Department of Agricultures' (USDA) local Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Director, who can be located at the following website:

In Massachusetts, you can also contact The ALB Program at 508.799.8330 or toll free at (866) 702.9938.Qualified Arborists can provide preventative treatments to non-infested trees through a 3-year program of tree or soil injections. The chemical treatment disperses into the tree and travels into twigs and leaves so infant stage and adult beetles ingest the chemical and die.

To find out more about a preventative 3-year treatment program to protect your properties trees, contact Carpenter Costin at or call (877) 308.8733.


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