Larger Pine Shoot Beetle

adult larger pine shoot beetle in a pine twig
Tomicus piniperda L.
Last updated by:

Faith Campbell

The common (or larger) pine shoot beetle was first discovered in July 1992, near Cleveland, Ohio (Kucera, 1992). It entered the country on solid wood packing material (USDA APHIS & Forest Service, 2000). Although the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA APHIS) has regulated solid wood packing material since 1995, this beetle continues to be detected on shipments (USDA APHIS & Forest Service, 2000). Established populations of this pest are spreading even though APHIS restricts the movement of potentially infested material; the beetle is now found in eleven states and two Canadian provinces (USDA APHIS & Forest Service, 2000). The pine shoot beetle has the potential to cause billions of dollars in damage if it reaches southern pine plantations and western forests; it could severely damage lodgepole pine, Pinus contorta, the most common tree in the northern Rocky Mountains (T. Hofacker, pers. comm., 1999).

USFS scientists and managers developed a conservation priority-setting framework for forest tree species at risk from pest & pathogens and other threats. The Project CAPTURE (Conservation Assessment and Prioritization of Forest Trees Under Risk of Extirpation) uses FIA data and expert opinion to group tree species under threat by non-native pests into vulnerability classes and specify appropriate management and conservation strategies. The scientists prioritized 419 tree species native to the North American continent. The analysis identified 15 taxonomic groups requiring the most immediate conservation intervention because of the tree species’ exposure to an extrinsic threat, their sensitivity to the threat, and their ability to adapt to it. Each of these 15 most vulnerable species, and several additional species, should be the focus of both a comprehensive gene conservation program and a genetic resistance screening and development effort.  Larger pine shoot beetle is not known to be a threat to any of these 15 most vulnerable species.


Hofacker, Thomas. 1999. USDA Forest Service, Forest Health Protection, 1601 North Kent Street, Arlington, Virginia 22209, personal communication.

Kucera, D.R. 1992. New introduction, Common pine shoot beetle. Pest Alert, United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Area, NA-PR-??-92.

Potter, K.M., Escanferla, M.E., Jetton, R.M., Man, G., Crane, B.S., Prioritizing the conservation needs of US tree spp: Evaluating vulnerability to forest insect and disease threats, Global Ecology and Conservation (2019), doi:

United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and Forest Service 2000. Pest Risk Assessment for Importation of Solid Wood Packing Materials into the United States. USDA APHIS and Forest Service. August 2000.