Indiana DNR News Release (July 30, 1998)

For more information contact:
Stephen Sellers, DNR Public Information or
Robert D. Waltz, State Entomologist, or
Gayle Jansen, Entomology Supervisor

Asian beetles not established in Indiana, but need for awareness is great

Hoosier workers and plant managers who receive products in wood crating from Asia, especially China, should be on the watch for Asian longhorned beetles and related species, which can do extensive damage to several kinds of shade and forest trees.

State Entomologist Bob Waltz, director of the Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Entomology and Plant Pathology, said approximately 90 acres in the Chicago region are possibly infested with this unwanted pestspecies. Besides Chicago, the beetle is also known from New York where it has been a serious problem.

Where the beetle has become established in Chicago and New York, it appearsthat it was brought into the neighborhoods on infested crating and bracing material shipped to the receiving states from Asia. Crates from China have been sources of regulatory interceptions.

Workers and managers can inspect and destroy any crating or brace materials (including raw, cut tree limbs) with large bore holes, sometimes accompanied by sawdust piles. Crating boards with large bore holes should not be taken to homes to be used as firewood without first being split and checked for larvae orbeetles.

Crating with beetles or larvae present should be held, stored in a secured area with heavy plastic wrap around the crating or in a secured storage room where the beetles can not escape, and reported to the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Lafayette, Ind. by calling 765/446-0267. People may also call the Division of Entomology and Plant Pathology at 317/232-4120.

Any beetles or larvae collected should be handled carefully (larger beetles may be able to pinch), placed in a secured container, and reported to the agencies above with information on where the crating or product originated, date received at the warehouse, and distributor (and if known, distribution center in the United States from which the product was routed).

If beetles are collected, they should be placed in a glass or a metal container, or strong plastic container, and carefully packed with newspaper surrounding the bottle to keep it from being broken in shipment. It is advisable to call before sending specimens.

There are several species of beetle that may be potential pests in North America if they were able to find their way here and to escape into neighborhoods or forests. The USDA and DNR do monitor traps that specifically target major pest species which are known to be introduced in cargo or similar pathways. However, no general survey is available for recipients of manufactured goods, instead the USDA and DNR must rely on inspections conducted at the ports of entry and the cooperation of local workers and plant managers to report any unusual beetles or scorpions or other pests carried in on crates they receive.