Ambrosia Beetle Poses Serious Threat to U.S. and Mexico Avocado Industry

Quick Facts:

  • An invasive species originating in Asia
  • Vector of Laurel Wilt (LW) disease caused by the fungus Raffaelea lauricola
  • Damaging to avocado and redbay trees
  • Disease kills an estimated 90-95 percent of infected trees
  • Disrupts the tree’s water transport system
  • First detected in the U.S. in Charleston, SC, in 1974
  • Attacks over 200 species of trees and bushes

Ambrosia beetles are a serious threat to commercial avocado growers as well as residential homeowners. The beetles are vectors of laurel wilt which often leads to the decline and ultimate death of infected trees. Ambrosia beetles bore through the tree’s bark and into the sapwood where they feed on fungi that they cultivate on the walls of the tunnel. Laurel Wilt, the vectored disease caused by the fungus Raffaelea lauricola, often causes whole tree death.

Most ambrosia beetle species attack trees and shrubs weakened by disease, injury or other stress factors; however some species also attack healthy trees.


Monitoring is essential to time pesticide applications. Typically, there is a very narrow window to control ambrosia beetle after emergence and before they begin boring into the bark - as little as 1-2 weeks. Even at shallow depths when boring first begins, the tree is susceptible to infection by Raffaelea lauricola.

Ambrosia Beetle Trap

    • Easy to assemble
    • Collapsible for easy storage
    • Resistant to rain, sprinklers and harsh weather
    • Easy to monitor
    • 30-day lure required (sold separately and replaceable)