The Ponderosa Pine Bark Borer is just one of over 25,000 species of longhorn beetles. The family is known for their impressive antennae, which are often as long or longer than their body, males with the longest. This species’ larvae feed in the degrading phloem of dead or dying ponderosa pine and other pines of the West. Typically, they move in after the host is killed by the western pine beetle or the mountain pine beetle, or when it is weakened severely by a long-standing drought. A nest-like pupal cell is created between the bark and the wood for their transformation from vertical-faced larva to flying adult. This is a female, with a long ovipositor (a tubular structure used for laying eggs) attached to her abdomen.
Photo by Kristi DuBois on 8/19/20 near Lolo, MT