What kinds of materials are commonly infested by wood beetles?
Wood-boring beetles which attack harvested wood in structures can damage almost any wood product. These may include wooden pallets, crates, or shipping carts; firewood; and household wooden items such as picture frames, broom handles, bamboo and bamboo products, wicker baskets and furniture, carved wooden art objects, wooden artifacts, decorative driftwood, wooden furniture, and wood paneling. The adults of some species also bore into soft metals, plaster, and plastic.
What are the signs of a wood beetle infestations?
One or two stray beetles are occasionally brought in on firewood or other wood products and may not indicate an active infestation. Since adult wood-boring beetles emerge within wood, look for round or oval exit holes that range in size from 1/32" to 3/8". Fine sawdust or frass (food fragments and excrement) may fall from exit holes and create small piles on the floor or surfaces below the wood. Dust or frass reappearing within one to weeks of cleanup indicates an active infestation.
What are some common types of wood-boring beetles?
There are many species in several families of wood-boring beetles. Some families, however, only infest live trees or recently harvested wood, so it is not necessary to treat for them since they will not re-infest the dead wood. These types include ambrosia beetles, round head borers, flat head borers (including metallic borers), and bark beetles. Wood-boring beetle adults and larvae are often difficult to collect, so identification begins with examination of exit holes, frass, and damage. The most common wood-infesting beetles of concern are Powderpost Beetles (of the family Lyctidae), Deathwatch Beetles (of the family Anobiidae), and False Powderpost Beetles (of the family Bostrichidae). These beetles are typically controlled in the same manner, though severe infestations should be evaluated by a professional and may require an entomologist for proper identification.