Common Texas  Tree Insects & Pests
Lace Bugs
 Adults have lacy, flat wings
 Feed on underside of leaves
 Drop dark tar spots of excrement
 Do not cause serious damage,
but may lead to leaf drop
Feed on:
 Sycamore
 Hackberry
 Oak
 Walnut 
Spider Mites
 More closely related to spiders
 Very small – use paper test to find
 Often see webbing
Feed on:
 Oaks
 Italian cypress
 Arborvitae
 Many other trees 
 Small insects on leaves or twigs
 Honeydew under tree
 Sooty mold under tree 
Symptoms Include: Stippled, bronzed or bleached appearance of leaves
 Small, pear shaped
 Some cause leaf curling
 Not very damaging
 Honeydew and sooty mold are a
 Lady beetles are natural
Feed on:
 Hackberry
 Pecan
 Elm
 Many other trees 
 Hard or soft shelled
 Soft scales crush easily
 Hard scales are difficult to control
 Some produce honeydew
 Most are not that detrimental, but
some can cause twig dieback
Feed on:
 Crape myrtles
 Magnolia
 Elm
 Many other trees 
 Missing leaf tissues
 Skeletonized leaves
 Will often see culprit 
Bag Worms
 Caterpillars which live in “bags”
made of leaves
 Can cause tip dieback
 Large populations can be
 Best controlled by manual
Feed on:
 Juniper (Cedar)
 Arborvitae
 Cypress
 Oak
 Many other trees 
Tent Caterpillars
 Form nests in crotches of trees or
in mass on trunks
 Defoliate trees in the spring
 Do not feed within webs; only rest
in webs
 Feed on most fruit trees
Fall Webworms
 Form large webs at the edge of
the canopy
 Heavy infestations can cover and
defoliate trees 
Juniper budworms
 Feed on juniper (cedar) foliage
causing browning
 Build tubes at tips of branches
 Can cause tip dieback
 Best controlled by manual
Gall Makers
 Abnormal bumps or balls on leaves or twigs 
Oak Apple Gall
Hackberry Nipple Gall
 Small holes in trunk
 Frass (saw dust)
 Tip dieback
 Tree decline
 Tree death 
Cottonwood Borer
 Larvae create 1”-2” galleries in
 Can cause young trees to break
at root crown
 Large infestations can cause trees
to break at base 
Redheaded Ash Borer
 Attack dying or dead trees
 Often found in firewood 
Gum Bumelia Borer
 Type of longhorn beetle
 Highly collectable
 Unsure of impact to tree 
Emerald Ash Borer
 Arrived from China in the 90’s on
wood packing material
 1st Found in US in 2002
 Have spread from the
northeastern US
 Will be in Texas Soon
 Often spread when firewood is
 Larvae tunnel under bark and kill
• Small bright green beetle
• Makes ‘D’ shaped holes in trunks
• Infested trees may have bark
chipped off by woodpeckers
looking for the insects
• Infested trees may have sparse
• Infested trees may have sprouts
at lower trunk 
 Drill holes in tree trunks in order to
feed on sap
 Look for parallel lines of holes
 Are protected under the Federal
Migratory Bird Act