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Ponderosa Borer Beetles

Ponderosa Borer BeetleThe largest of Colorado’s beetle species, the Ponderosa Borer Beetle adults are roughly 45-60mm in length.  Their elongated bodies are dark brown with lighter brown areas on their wing covers.  Larvae are very large when full grown, often extending the length of the palm of an average sized hand.  They are creamy off-white in color except for their dark rounded head.  Developing in the roots of several species of pines, the range in Colorado largely over laps that of the Ponderosa Pine which their name is derived from.  Adults are present from June to August each year with females laying their eggs along the crevices of the bark.  Larvae excavate burrow systems into the wood over a period of several years.  Ponderosa Borer Beetles only attack dead or fallen trees and are not considered a threat to living trees in the area.  Overall, it is the sheer size of the beetle and their larvae that cause the most attention and concern.  Ponderosa Borer Beetles are most commonly confused with longhorned beetle species.  Increases in population area often encountered following forest fires, droughts and other high stress instances in which large numbers of trees are killed off.