This destructive invader to North America was first discovered in 1996 in the United States, and has since spread throughout the northeast U.S. and into Canada, as well as to many countries in Europe. It feeds on and kills many kinds of hardwood trees, including maple, ash, birch, poplar, willow, elm, and many others. The life cycle takes from 1 to 2 years to complete, with overwintering done as either larva or pupa. The larva feeds primarily in the cambium layer under the bark, effectively girdling the tree to cut off the flow of nutrients. The adult is not a strong flyer, but in some cases has been known to fly a mile or more to infest new trees. The adults feed on leaves and twigs and the female tends to lay eggs on the tree from which she emerged. She chews dozens of small depressions in the bark of the tree and deposits an egg in each of them. Adult beetles may be present from May to October, with their peak abundance in mid-summer. Infested trees will have round emergence holes about ½ inch to ¾ inch in diameter, often with stringy frass hanging from the holes or on the ground below.
At the current time insecticides are not considered to be effective against this beetle. Monitoring efforts using insecticides sprayed on foliage have resulted in detection of the adult beetles. Control is relying on detection, removal, and destruction of infested trees, a quarantine on the movement of wood products and firewood from infested areas, and continuous monitoring in areas not yet considered infested.