Trachykele blondeli (Buprestidae)

the western cedar borer


Bright emerald green beetle with a golden sheen, 11-17 mm in length. Elytra have several dark spots.


Bore holes created by Trachykele blondeli, the western cedar borer.

Adults feed on foliage and deposit eggs under bark scales on the branches of living trees. The larvae bore from the branches to the bole, mining in the heartwood for 2-3 or more years.

Powderworm on Texada Island - field trip to the northern end of Texada Island with Jan-Evert Hermans to track down some current powderworm infestations in western red cedar.

Principal Hosts:

Thuja plicata is the main host. Other hosts are species of Juniperus, Cupressus and perhaps Libocedrus decurrens.

Economic Importance:

Larval mining causes severe degrade and cull in trees cut for poles, shingles, and other products requiring sound wood. The damage is concentrated in the crown area of the tree. Heavy infestations of the heartwood by the maturing larvae are known as "powderworm" damage. Fallers are very concerned when felling such trees as the terminal flick that travels to the top of the tree as it starts to fall can snap off the crown which falls directly down on the stump. Damaged wood is sometimes used for ornamental panelling.

References and Links:

EAG: 528-529; FC: 265.

See HForest.

Additional Images:

western redcedar borer in heartwood western redcedar scored by feeding by larvae of Trachykele blondeli