Pitcheating Weevil – Pachylobius piciovorus

Pitch eating weevil (Pachylobius piciovorus)

Latin Name: Pachylobius piciovorus

Common Name: Pitch eating Weevil


The pitch-eating weevil is a kind of weevil that eats pitch. Pachylobius piciovorus can be quite damaging to young pines. Any insect might be a seasonal pest of pines used for Christmas trees, and any variety of pine could be harmed.

  • Adult weevils are rectangular and strong, with a black to reddish-brown coloration and a length of approximately 1/2 inch (12 mm). Small, dispersed patches of yellowish hairs cover the wing coverings.
  • Pitch-eating weevil adults are brownish-black with yellowish patches on their wing coverings and are 10 – 12 mm in length.
  • The larvae are typical weevil grubs, with white bodies and brown heads, legless bodies, and a C-shaped structure. The mature larvae are 6 to 7 mm in length.

Host plants:

This weevil feeds on various pines, especially shortleaf, loblolly (Pinus taeda L.), and slash pines (Pinus elliottii Engelm.)


This weevil is found throughout the eastern United States.

Damage caused by White Pine Weevil:

Adult feeding causes the most significant damage to tiny seedlings and the branches of bigger trees. Weevils eat bark by gnawing small, uneven holes in it. When there is a lot of feeding going on, the holes close up and girdle tiny trees or the branches of bigger trees. Even if bigger trees’ terminals are not encircled, “flagging” or deformed terminals might occur, reducing the tree’s marketability. Problem is usually more serious in or near freshly cut timber areas.

Life history and Habits:

Adult weevils are drawn to the odor of freshly logged regions by the stench of new pine resin. Eggs are placed in the lateral roots of new pine stumps after mating. In 5 to 10 days, the eggs will hatch. Larvae eat the inner bark tissue of decaying roots as a food source. Pupation occurs when fully developed larvae form a chip cocoon in the wood. Depending on the climate, the pupal stage might span a few weeks to many months. Adult weevils can be found throughout the year, generally within flying distance of any pine-cutting region. Each year, there may be two generations.