Choose a country to see content specific to your location

Skip to main content

Tea Shot-Hole Borer

Euwallacea fornicatus

Tea Shot-Hole Borer, Shot-Hole Borer of Tea, Shot-Hole Borer Beetle

A close up photograph of a Euwallacea fornicatus tea shot-hole borer on some wood
A Shot-Hole Borer Beetle are major pests which infest a wide range of plants. Shot-Hole Borer attack plants by tunnelling the branches and stems of plants. Shot-Hole Borer Beetles have more recently been observed inbreeding with other closely related species of beetle. If thuis continues, it could dramatically quicken the invasive spread of beetles across different parts of the world. Evidence has shown that Shot-Hole Borers are capable of surviving on many species of tree, providing there is sufficient water content. Shot-Hole Borers can make infestations worse by introducing a symbiotic fungus to the site of infection, which stays stored in their mouths. The fungus weakens the plant making it easier for beetles to bore into branches.
Free download for your phone or tablet
Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play

Traits

Major pests of tea plants and other fruits and vegetables.

Appearance

Adults: A small insect, the females reach 2.5 mm when mature. The males only grow to around half of this length. They are black-brown and oblong. There are multiple rows of faint dots down the wingcases. If you get close enough, you may see fine, erect rows of hairs on the wingcases (elytra). Larvae: The larvae look very similar to chafer grubs. They have the characteristic 'C' shaped body, orange heads, with no legs. Fully grown larvae measure 3mm.

Symptoms

Beetles bore stems. Tiny, black beetles might be seen crawling on the surfaces of branches. Stem die back may be evident in plants. Stems can begin to become weak and rot. The plants growth may become stunted. Plant death is possible.

Activity

Diurnal

Personality

Order

Coleoptera

Family

Bostrichidae

Metamorphosis

Complete

Distribution

Africa, Australia, parts of Asia and the Pacific Islands

Biological treatment

If buying a tree from a commercial garden centre, it's advised to keep it separated from other plants before planting it to ensure it's not infested. If you think that you have a tree-borer infestation, it might be worth removing the tree and disposing of it sensibly. These pests are highly invasive and spread quickly.

Chemical treatment

Unfortunately, there's currently no effective form of chemical control as of yet. Be vigilant and inspect trees regularly. It's thought deltamethrin, quinalphos and cypermethrin could be an effective pesticide if the plant is still small enough to treat. Be sure to follow instructions carefully, making sure not to spray plants that are in flower.

Attracts

Tea

Camellia sinensis

Deciduous camellia

Stewartia spp.

Avocado 'Hass'

Persea americana 'Hass'

Avocado

Persea americana

Citrus

Citrus spp.

A group of Theobroma cacao fruit hanging from a tree

Cacao

Theobroma cacao

Pomegranate

Punica granatum

Free download for your phone or tablet
Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play

Plant Knowledge

Search our ever-growing knowledge base to find plants and information. Find out about pests and diseases you should be keeping an eye out for. Watch How to videos or follow step by step guides for tasks in the garden. Free download for your phone or tablet.
Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play