National Arbor Day, which this year is April 24, is our yearly reminder of how important trees are. Trees transform carbon dioxide into oxygen, a vital step in halting greenhouse gases and climate change. Plus, they prevent soil erosion and protect our drinking water!
Various insects also live in trees and some bugs can infest trees causing damage. Infestations of wood can be so serious that New York State forbids the transportation or sale of untreated firewood more than 50 miles from its original location to deter the spread of invasive insects.
What Insects Infest Trees?
Wood infesting insects fall into two categories: Primary Invaders and Secondary Invaders. Primary invaders are insects that live in healthy trees. Secondary invaders live in stressed and dead wood. Either type of invader can do incredible damage to trees on your property.
You might also hear the term “terrestrial invasive species” when referring to certain insects. Terrestrial invasive species are living organisms – bugs or something else – that have a negative impact on our forests and fields.
What Bugs Are Dangerous to My Trees?
The Asian Longhorned Beetle has been labeled “one of the worst insects in America.” It has killed more than 8,000 trees on Long Island. The USDA designated August as Tree Check Month because that’s when this beetle is most active.
Technically, the Asian Longhorned Beetle is harmless to people and pets. However, the tunnels it creates within trees can cause harm if, for example, it weakens a branch, causing it to break, fall, and hit you.
The beetle itself is small – only about one-inch long. You’re probably more likely to notice the dime-sized exit hole it leaves behind in bark and branches, possibly with sawdust on the ground beneath it. These beetles like hardwood trees like maple, birch, elm, willow, ash, and poplar trees, all of which can be found on Long Island.
The U.S. Forest Service and NY Department of Environment Conservation confirmed Southern Pine Beetles on Long Island. This tiny black beetle, which is about the size of a rice grain, is a serious threat to Long Island’s pine barrens as well as pine trees anywhere on the island.
New York officials have also found Spotted Lanternflies in Suffolk County. They look like colorful moths and prey on apple trees, among other plants like grapes and hops. Spotted lanternflies are very active from July to December.
These are just a few of the insects that can live in or prey on your trees. Some, like paper wasps, can be a nuisance. Whereas aphids seem like just an annoyance but can do a lot of damage.
Arrow Can Keep You Insect Free
While Arrow Exterminating does not treat trees, we can handle every other pest problem you have in or around your home. Don’t risk the health of your family and pets. Call us for more information on preventative treatments to keep your home bug free. To get started, contact Arrow Exterminating today.