Integrated Pest Management

Cedar/Cypress Bark Beetles

cedar bark beetle

Cedar bark beetle (Steven Valley, Oregon Department of Agriculture,

cedar bark beetle

Twig dieback from cedar bark beetle feeding (Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University,

cedar bark beetle frass

Frass left by cedar bark beetles (Donald J. Goheen, USDA Forest Service,

Pest Description

  • adults: ~ 1/8 inch long; black to reddish brown
  • larvae: white grub with a brown head capsule; no legs

Host Plants, Diet & Damage

  • Utah and Rocky Mountain juniper; eastern red cedar; Arizona cypress; Leyland cypress; other cypress trees
  • feed on tree phloem under bark
  • can notch bark
  • can girdle branches and stems of stressed trees resulting in discolored or dead foliage
  • girdling causes branch or tree dieback or death
  • can introduce fungal pathogens
  • larvae and adults both cause damage

Biology, Life Cycle & Damaging Life Stage

  • overwinter as larvae under tree bark
  • typically one generation; two generations may occur in some locations
  • adults can attack trees from spring to fall, depending on location (mid- to late-summer for most of Utah)
  • prefer damaged or stressed trees

IPM Recommendations

  • Reduce stress and keep trees healthy and damage free.
  • Do not overwater. Occasional deep irrigation is preferred.
  • Prune dead or dying material from affected trees during winter and remove from site.
  • Apply insecticides (carbamates; pyrethroids) to the bark on the main stem and branches to prevent damage to susceptible trees in areas of active cedar/cypress bark beetle activity.

For more information, see our Bark Beetles fact sheet.