Wood Borers

Wood-infesting or wood-boring beetles is a broad term encompassing many species and families of beetles whose larval or adult forms eat and destroy wood. Many of these borers are beneficial, and function  to help reduce dead wood to a form that can be utilized as plant food.  There are, however, a small group species with an appetite for seasoned wood and they can be very destructive to homes and furnishings.

Flatheaded Wood Borers

The name of the flatheaded wood borer comes from the larvae, which appears to have a large, flat head. The larvae bores through wood, creating winding tunnels, or galleries, in weakened, dying, or recently cut trees. This pest is frequently brought into the home with firewood or already infested timber. As adults, they become beautifully marked metallic-colored beetles.

Old House Borers

The old house borer is the only flatheaded wood borer that will reinfest the wood from which it emerged. Despite its name, this beetle is usually found in newer homes, partly because of the use of wood infected with eggs, and partly because these beetles need the resin content found in wood less than ten years old. The old house borer attacks only softwoods, usually pine, where larvae will tunnel out galleries and remain to develop for 2-5 years. When they do emerge as adults, they cut out exit holes in the wood 1/4 to 3/8 inch in diameter.  Piles of frass may appear at the exit hole and/or on the floor. Adult old house borers range from 5/8 to 1 inch in length and are brownish-black in color, with many gray hairs on the head and forepart of the body.


If you have a problem with wood borers around your home, call University Termite & Pest Control and have one of their professionals come over and take a look.  They have the skill and knowledge to identify them and make a correct diagnosis the first time, every time.

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