The Asian Longhorned Beetle, Its Prevention and Control

asian longhorned beetle
Invasive longhorned beetle species Anoplophora glabripennis. (Pudding4brains/Wikimedia Commons)

Trees favored by the Asian longhorned beetle are predominantly maples, but infestations have also been discovered in horse-chestnuts, poplars, willows, elms, mulberries, and black locusts. Currently, there is no known practical chemical or biological defense against the Asian Longhorned Beetle and, in North America, they have few natural predators.

How Trees Killed Are Killed by ALB

The Asian longhorned beetle is a black insect with white speckles that grows a long antenna. The beetle chews its way into hardwood trees to lay eggs. The eggs produce larvae and those larvae tunnel deep under the bark and feed on living tree tissue. This feeding effectively cuts off the tree's food supply and starves it to the point of death.

How ALB Spreads

Studies have shown that an Asian long-horned beetle can fly as far as several city blocks in search of a new host tree. The good news is that the beetle tends to lay eggs in the same tree from which they emerged as adults — they usually limit their flights under normal conditions.


Unfortunately, there are no methods developed to practically prevent or control Asian longhorned beetle. If you detect the presence of ALB, the only thing that will help is to contact local forestry officials for consultation. They can take steps to contain the outbreak.

The only way currently known to combat the Asian Longhorned Beetle is to destroy the infested trees. While cutting down mature trees is not a great solution for the tree owner and a tragedy, it is preferable to permitting the Asian longhorned beetle to spread.

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Nix, Steve. "The Asian Longhorned Beetle, Its Prevention and Control." ThoughtCo, Jul. 30, 2021, Nix, Steve. (2021, July 30). The Asian Longhorned Beetle, Its Prevention and Control. Retrieved from Nix, Steve. "The Asian Longhorned Beetle, Its Prevention and Control." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 26, 2023).