- adults: ~ 1/6 inch; reddish brown to black
- rear end of beetle is concave and surrounded by four prominent spines
- larvae: white grubs with a brown head capsule; no legs
Host Plants, Diet & Damage
- ponderosa pine; Jeffrey pine; lodgepole pine; Jack pine; other stressed pine trees
- feed on tree phloem
- produce pitch tubes; sawdust-like frass
- kill trees systematically from the top down
- can introduce fungal pathogens
Biology, Life Cycle & Damaging Life Stage
- overwinter as adults (mostly) under tree bark or in limbs or duff on the ground
- two to three generations per year
- emerge in early spring with warming temperatures (warmer than 500F)
- males mate with multiple females creating diagnostic gallery pattern
- larvae are the damaging life stage
- Reduce stress and keep trees healthy and damage free.
- Irrigate properly.
- Remove affected material (usually tree tops) and remove from site, or debark.
- Monitor nearby pine trees for signs of Ips attacks.
- If known populations are nearby, an insecticide (carbamate; pyrethroid) applied to the bark prior to beetle flight can protect trees.
For more information, see our Bark Beetles fact sheet.