Maine Urges Residents to Check Trees for These 3 Invasive Bugs
One of the most beautiful things about the state of Maine is the overwhelming number of trees we have in this state. After all, we didn't become the Pine Tree State just because. Well, invasive bug species and diseases that affect trees here in Maine are on the rise and according to the KJ, state officials are urging Maine residents to keep an eye on their trees to make sure they are not being targeted by these unwanted pests.
The first thing you'll want to be on the lookout for is the Asian Longhorned Beetle. This invasive bug is very shiny black with shiny white spots. Its antenna are also very long, too, which is how it got its name in the first place. They live inside the tree and bores its way through the wood of the tree, sometimes deep inside. After a couple years it will come out of the wood and will make a round or sometimes oval hole. There will most likely be lots of sawdust around the tree when it comes out. Additionally, when it lays eggs in the tree you may notice smaller holes where the bug burrowed a safe-space to lay the eggs.
Next on the list is the Emerald Ash Borer. This little invasive bad boy has killed millions of ash trees all through the northeast United States and parts of Canada. This beetle isn't super large, only maxing out at about 14 millimetres in length. Experts believe these pests made their way into the region after being trapped in wood packaging from Asia. This beetle can fly and is very destructive to ash trees. These beetles chew their way through the bark and eventually into the tree. Most of the initial destruction actually occurs during the larva stage of the beetle's life. Some of the most common signs of an Emerald Ash Borer infestation include long chutes growing from the trunk and branches, a thinning crown and even 'S' shaped tunnels that you may find underneath the bark filled with sawdust.
The next bug to be on the lookout for may actually be the easiest on the list to identify. The Spotted Lanternfly, native to Asia, is an invasive species here in the United States that can wreak havoc on your trees. From hatching to adulthood the lanternfly will go through several stages and colors. All of the different stages and color changes are documented in the video below. The adult bugs use their piercing mouths to suck the sap out of trees. They also tend to gather in large groups making them even easier to locate and identify on your trees.
Maine officials are asking people to take a few minutes to look over the trees in their yards and neighborhoods. If you think you may have found something of concern or one of the invasive species covered here, take a photo and email your concerns to bugwatch@Maine.gov .