Emerald Ash Borer and Look-Alikes

The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a member of a family of insects called metallic wood-boring beetles (Buprestidae). Adult EAB are a bright metallic emerald green color and can be found from late May to mid-August. The dorsal side of the abdomen, which can be seen when the wings are spread, is a metallic purplish red. Adult EAB average 3/8 inch to 3/4 inch (10 mm to 20 mm) long and 1/6 inch (4 mm) wide (males are slightly smaller than females). For more help identifying EAB please see the Identifying Emerald Ash Borer fact sheet describing EAB and its signs and symptoms.

Emerald Ash Borer Gallery

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  • Three Profiles Image
  • Two Profiles, Female
  • Lateral View
  • Dorsal View
  • Dorsal View, showing abdomen
  • Lateral View, Male, Close Up
  • Lateral View Female, Close Up
  • Front View, Female
  • Front View, Male
Three Profiles Image 1 Two Profiles, Female 2 Lateral View 3 Dorsal View 4 Dorsal View, showing abdomen 5 Lateral View, Male, Close Up 6 Lateral View Female, Close Up 7 Front View, Female 8 Front View, Male  9


Buprestid Look-Alikes

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  • <i>Agrilus anxius</i>, Bronze Birch Borer
  • <i>Agrilus bilineatus</i>, Twolined Chestnut Borer
  • <i>Buprestis maculativentris</i>, Ventrally-Spotted Buprestid
  • <i>Buprestis striata</i>, Striated Borer
  • <i>Chrysobothris femorata</i>, Flatheaded Appletree Borer
  • <i>Chrysobothris sexsignat</i>a, Metallic Wood-Boring Beetle
  • <i>Dicerca caudata</i>, Metallic Wood-Boring Beetle
  • <i>Dicerca divaricata</i>, Flatheaded Cherry Tree Borer
  • <i>Dicerca lurida</i>, Lurid Flatheaded Borer
  • <i>Phaenops fulvoguttata</i>, Hemlock Borer
  • <i>Poecilonota cyanipes</i>, Eastern Poplar Buprestid
  • <i>Spectralia gracilipes</i>, Metallic Wood-Boring Beetle
Agrilus anxius, Bronze Birch Borer1 Agrilus bilineatus, Twolined Chestnut Borer 2 Buprestis maculativentris, Ventrally-Spotted Buprestid 3 Buprestis striata, Striated Borer 4 Chrysobothris femorata, Flatheaded Appletree Borer 5 Chrysobothris sexsignata, Metallic Wood-Boring Beetle 6 Dicerca caudata, Metallic Wood-Boring Beetle 7 Dicerca divaricata, Flatheaded Cherry Tree Borer  8 Dicerca lurida, Lurid Flatheaded Borer  9 Phaenops fulvoguttata, Hemlock Borer 10 Poecilonota cyanipes, Eastern Poplar Buprestid 11 Spectralia gracilipes, Metallic Wood-Boring Beetle 12


Emerald Ash Borer Larvae

EAB larvae can be easy to identify. Look creamy white larvae up to 1.5 inches long feeding in "S" shaped galleries. Larvae have a "nested bells" look to their body segments (other borer larvae in ash do not have these "bells".

  • EAB LarvaPhoto Credit: David Cappeart, Michigan State University


Links to EAB Look-Alike Charts and Documents:

For more help in identifying Emerald Ash Borer please see these key resources:

Unless otherwise noted, all photos on this page were taken by Kent Loeffler, Director of the Plant Pathology Photo Lab at Cornell University, Department of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology.

To distinguish EAB galleries in Ash from galleries of other insects please see the document Recognizing Insect Galleries in Ash Trees in Minnesota

Download EAB Photos: