Bug or Beetle or what in Pine Trees

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Does anyone know what kind of critter may be eating the dead pine trees in my woods. There is saw dust all at the base of the trees but the weirdest part is you can hear them gnawing away. It must be big do be that loud. I can not see them but I hear them and see the saw dust. They are eating the dead trees only.....any ideas?

-- C.B. Anderson (wande333@earthlink.net), July 28, 2001


Oh Gosh,,,,I have forgotten the name, But,,, They are a beetle and they do make a lot of noise! They only eat dead wood, mostly pine, and I might add only new dead wood. They will not be there next year (in the same tree). You hear them a lot around log decks, ie. where log trucks were loaded, and trimmed up limbs are laying around on the ground. Not sure if I can remember hearing them in standing dead trees, but when I worked at a sawmill, well the log yard sounded as bad as the sawmill itself!!!!! Hope this helps ya, ddt

-- ddt (troubled@ftc-i.net), July 28, 2001.

If you're in the south, you can hear the beetles in the trees and there's sawdust all around the base you may very well have a pine beetle infestation. They're a plague and a nuisance all over North Florida with the drought these last couple of years. The state is making folks cut down infested pines all over the place to try to limit their spread. Tree farming is a major agricultural industry in this state.


-- Live Oak (oneliveoak@yahoo.com), July 28, 2001.

It's pine beetles or sawflies, or maybe, probably both, here in N.E. Tex they've killed lots of timber, our family had to harvest 20 year growth last year ( about 10 yrs to early) due to these pest and the drought, in order to salvage what they had before they lost it all. They are in live trees also, they kill them. Drought conditions invite them in also. If you have a small lot you can spray for them, but we had 150 acres so, it wasn't feasible, by the time the trees appear dead, they've been dead for several months. This info came from the forestry service. Where are you located

-- Carol in Tx (cwaldrop@peoplescom.net), July 29, 2001.

I live in the south and work in the forest industry. Sorry I can not think of the name of the beetle,,,but! We do have a pine beetle problem,,,but,,,you will not "hear" those bad boys working, they only eat on live trees. The only way you can detect them (the pine beetle) is by seeing traces of sap running, and the needles turning from green to yellow to dead. The beetle that you can hear, only feeds on dead trees that are laying on the ground, I have never heard one in a standing tree. After hurricane Hugo,,,well just know you could hear those rascals everywhere! I want to say the beetles you hear are "Bark" beetles and they eat on the cambuim layer , which is between the bark and wood. They will not damage the wood, so it can be sawed for lumber. Note on pine beetles, they get there start by attacking a weak tree, such as one hit by lightning. Once in the weak tree they multiple so fast they "jump" to the next live tree, etc. ,etc., etc. Suddenly you have a major area of dead trees. About the only way you can stop the pine beetle is by cutting down all the dead trees, and a strip of live trees around the area, and hauling them off, ie to a paper or saw mill. Also since we have been in a drought down here in the south for the last 3 years, our trees are stressed, thus weakened, thus more pine beetles. Pine beetles have killed 95% of the pine trees on 36,000 acres of forest I work on in Tn., all started by no rain, weak trees, and now no trees! I apologize that I do not remember the name of the beetle that makes all the racket while chewing,,,but he for sure is not the dreaded pine beetle. Hope this is as clear as mud now! thanks ddt

-- ddt (troubled@ftc-i.net), July 29, 2001.

DDT is correct. You cannot hear pine beetles, and they do not eat dead wood. They leave no sawdust or debris, but the large puddle of sap is easy to spot at the area where they entered the tree. They prey on trees that are alive but weak.

Like the others, I don't know the name of the beetle which eats the dead wood. They are loud, and they leave huge piles of sawdust for such a small insect.

-- Jim (catchthesun@yahoo.com), July 29, 2001.


-- cb anderson (wande333@earthlink.net), July 29, 2001.

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