|scientific name Pissodes strobi |
common name White Pine Weevil
Pissodes strobi are known to occur in coniferous forests where their host plants (Pines and Spruces) also occur (Drouin and Langor, 1991)
Adults overwinter on forest floors and emerge in late April, remaining active until early September (Drouin and Langor, 1991).
Pissodes strobi adults are small (approximately 6mm long) and have long snouts with clubbed antennae attached. Small white and light brown spots pepper their body, with usually two larger spots on the posterior part of their elytra (wing cover).
Pissodes strobi is a major forest pest, causing millions of dollars of damage to the forestry industry. They also cause major damage in tree plantations, including Christmas tree plantations (Lewis et al 2000). This damage is caused by both the adults and the larvae of the species. The adults puncture the tree bark near the tips of branches with their long snouts to feed on the soft tissue inside. These holes, left by the weevils, may allow entry into the tree by disease causing agents (Langor and Sperling, 1995). Adults also lay their eggs in the holes caused by feeding. The larvae hatch and bore down further into the tree, resulting in the death of that branch (Drouin and Langor, 1991). To control P. strobi, spraying pesticides and pruning infected areas usually help prevent damage. Also, growing trees in shade may reduce damage significantly as well. This is especially important in tree plantations (Droin and Langor, 1991).
Pissodes strobi has no conservation issues at this time, mostly due to its status as a major forest pest.
The larvae of these beetles feed on a wide range of Pines and Spruces
(Smith and Sugden, 1969). Their most common host plant is the White Pine in the East and the Engelmann Spruce in the West (Philips and Lanier, 2000). Pissodes strobi attack the host plant in the previous years growth on branches near the top of the tree (Philips and Lanier, 2000).
In the east, P. strobi can be found throughout the maritime provinces in the north and extending down to eastern U.S.A. down to Georgia (Langor and Sperling, 1995). In the west, P. strobi extends from southern Yukon to northern California and into the pacific Northwest (Langor and Sperling, 1995). The west and east groups are connected by population occurring all across the Canadian prairies (Langor and Sperling, 1995).
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