Invasive Insect Population by State

spongy moth on a leaf
iStock.com/phototrip

Written by Alan Lemus

Published: March 19, 2023

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Invasive insect populations pose a significant threat to the ecological, economic, and human health of the United States. 

These non-native species can rapidly spread and disrupt local ecosystems, damage crops, and transmit diseases. The impact of invasive insects can be devastating, with potential long-term implications for the health of our planet. 

As such, understanding and managing invasive insect populations is crucial. 

Today, we explore the most common invasive insect found in the U.S., their environmental impact, and the methods used to control and manage them. 

Asian longhorn beetle

The Asian longhorn beetle is one of the most invasive beetle species in the world.

History of Invasive Insects in the U.S.

The introduction of invasive insect species to the U.S. isn’t a new phenomenon. Insects have been unintentionally or intentionally transported to the United States for hundreds of years. 

Introduction of Invasive Insect Species

Invasive insect species have been introduced to the U.S. through various means.

Some species were intentionally introduced for agricultural or ornamental purposes, while others were introduced accidentally through international trade or travel. 

Examples of invasive insect species introduced to the U.S. are:

Key Events in the History of Invasive Insects in the U.S.

The impact of invasive insect species has increased significantly over time due to:

  • Industrialization
  • Transportation
  • Globalization

In the early 1900s, the San Jose scale and Mediterranean fruit fly caused significant damage to crops in California. 

During the 1950s and 1960s, the Japanese beetle and gypsy moth began to spread across the country. 

In the modern era, new invasive species continue to emerge, such as:

Spotted lanternfly sitting with open wings on a leaf.

Spotted lanternfly is a newer invasive species.

Factors Contributing to Invasive Insect Populations

Invasive insect populations are often a result of a complex interplay of factors, including:

  • Globalization and international trade
  • Climate change
  • Human activities
  • Lack of natural predators and parasites

Globalization and International Trade

The globalization of trade and transportation has facilitated the introduction and spread of invasive insects worldwide. 

As people and goods move across borders, insects can hitchhike on goods and vehicles and establish themselves in new environments. This has contributed significantly to the spread of invasive species, including insects.

Climate Change

This can also contribute to the establishment and spread of invasive insect populations. 

Changes in temperature, precipitation, and weather patterns can alter the suitability of certain habitats for insects, allowing them to expand their ranges and establish new populations.

Human Activities

Human activities, such as urbanization, land-use change, and agricultural practices, can create new habitats and alter existing ones. This can provide opportunities for invasive insects to establish themselves. 

For instance, the emerald ash borer got to North America through the importation of wooden packing material from Asia. It has since spread to ash trees throughout much of the continent.

Lack of Natural Predators and Parasites

Invasive insects often lack natural predators and parasites in their new environments. This can allow their populations to grow unchecked. 

This can make it difficult to control invasive species’ spread and impact once they’ve become established.

emerald ash borer

The emerald ash borer got to North America through the importation of wooden packing material from Asia.

Impact of Invasive Insect Populations

The impact of invasive insect populations can be significant and far-reaching, affecting economic, environmental, and human health outcomes.

Economic Impacts

Invasive insects can cause significant economic losses by damaging crops, forests, and other resources. 

The emerald ash borer, for example, has caused an estimated $10 billion in economic losses in the United States due to its impact on the forestry industry. 

Other invasive insects, such as the spotted lanternfly, can damage fruit trees and grape vines, posing a significant threat to the agricultural industry.

Environmental Impacts

Invasive insects can disrupt local ecosystems, causing declines in biodiversity and altering natural processes. 

They can also impact forest ecosystems by damaging trees and reducing their ability to provide habitat and support other species. 

For example, the Asian longhorned beetle has caused significant damage to hardwood trees in the Northeastern U.S. This has impacted forest ecosystems and the wildlife that depend on them.

Human Health Impacts

Some invasive insects can threaten human health by transmitting diseases or causing allergic reactions. 

Mosquitoes and ticks, for example, can transmit diseases such as Lyme disease and West Nile virus to humans. 

Other invasive insects, such as the Asian lady beetle, can cause skin irritation and respiratory problems in some people.

Management and Control of Invasive Insect Populations

Effective management and control of invasive insect populations requires a multi-pronged approach that addresses the underlying factors contributing to their spread and impact. The following strategies are commonly used:

  • Prevention of introduction
  • Early detection and quick response
  • Biological control
  • Chemical control
  • Integrated pest management
  • Restoration and rehabilitation

Prevention of Introduction

Preventing invasive insect species introduction is the most effective way to manage their populations. 

This can be achieved through measures such as:

  • Quarantine inspections at ports of entry
  • Restricting the import of high-risk goods
  • Implementing public education campaigns to raise awareness of the risks associated with invasive species

Early Detection and Quick Response

This can help prevent the establishment and spread of invasive insect populations. This involves:

  • Monitoring for new species
  • Identifying and mapping the distribution of invasive species
  • Implementing targeted control measures to prevent their spread

Biological Control

It involves using natural enemies like predators, pathogens, or parasites to control invasive insect populations. 

This approach can effectively reduce the impact of invasive species while minimizing using pesticides and other chemical treatments.

Chemical Control

It involves using pesticides and other chemical treatment options to manage invasive insect populations. 

This approach can effectively reduce the impact of invasive species but must be used carefully to avoid harming non-target species and minimize the risk of pesticide resistance.

Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

IPM is a holistic approach combining various management strategies to reduce the impact of invasive insect populations while minimizing chemical treatments. IPM involves:

  • Monitoring for pests
  • Identifying the best management strategies based on the specific situation
  • Implementing a range of control measures as needed

Restoration and Rehabilitation

Restoration and rehabilitation efforts can help restore ecosystems impacted by invasive insect populations. This can involve:

  • Planting native species
  • Restoring natural habitats
  • Managing invasive species through a combination of control measures
asian lady beetle on a leaf

The

Asian lady beetle

, can cause skin irritation and respiratory problems in some people.

Population by State

In this section, we present the invasive insect population by state according to Edd Mapps. Then, we present the number of invasive insect species in each state and break it down into categories for all 50 U.S. states.

Alabama: 65

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 12
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 10
  • Chewing insects: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 4
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Biological control agents of insects: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Omnivorous foragers: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers, and bagworms: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage and other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Decaying-matter feeding insects – saprophagous: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1

Alaska: 18

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 8
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 2
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Leafmining/needlemining insects: 2
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 1
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 1
  • Boring insects: 1
  • Chewing insects: 1

 Arizona: 33

  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 7
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 7
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 2
  • Chewing insects: 1
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1

Arkansas: 45

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 7
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 6
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 2
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 2
  • Biological control agents of insects: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage and other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 1
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers, and bagworms: 1

California: 83

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 19
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 16
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 10
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Chewing insects: 5
  • Root-feeding insects: 4
  • Xylophagous insects: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 2
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 2
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of insects: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1

Colorado: 41

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 10
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 3
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1

 Connecticut: 83

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 25
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 14
  • Chewing insects: 9
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 6
  • Boring insects: 6
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 4
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 3
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers, and bagworms: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Biological control agents of insects: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Delaware: 47

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 10
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 9
  • Chewing insects: 8
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Boring insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • xylophagous insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Florida: 69

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 11
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 10
  • Nuisance insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 4
  • Biological control agents of insects: 4
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 3
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 3
  • Decaying-matter feeding insects – saprophagous: 3
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 2
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 2
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 2
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers, and bagworms: 1
  • Aquatic animals: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Crabs, shrimps, and lobsters: 1
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Nectar and pollen feeding insects: 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1

Georgia: 88

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 14
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 12
  • Boring insects: 9
  • Chewing insects: 7
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 5
  • Invertebrate predators: 4
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Biological control agents of insects: 3
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 3
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 2
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Decaying-matter feeding insects – saprophagous: 1
  • Plant disease vectors: 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1

Hawaii: 11

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 4
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 2
  • Nuisance insects: 2
  • Boring insects 1
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1

Idaho: 175

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 64
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 32
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 23
  • Root-feeding insects: 13
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 9
  • Gallmaker insects: 6
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 6
  • Boring insects: 6
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 3
  • Mites and ticks: 2
  • Invertebrate predators : 2
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1

Illinois: 380

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 161
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 130
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 23
  • Gallmaker insects: 16
  • Root-feeding insects: 13
  • Chewing insects: 8
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Aquatic animals: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Crabs, shrimps, and lobsters: 1

Indiana: 376

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 155
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 125
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 22
  • Gallmaker insects: 17
  • Root-feeding insects: 15
  • Chewing insects: 9
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 6
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 6
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Other/unknown: 1
  • Misc. insects: 1

 Iowa: 328

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 139
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 112
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 19
  • Gallmaker insects: 18
  • Root-feeding insects: 13
  • Chewing insects: 7
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Kansas: 249

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 97
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 81
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 13
  • Gallmaker insects: 13
  • Root-feeding insects: 13
  • Chewing insects: 6
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 5
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1

Kentucky: 284

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 111
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 93
  • Gallmaker insects: 16
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 16
  • Root-feeding insects: 12
  • Chewing insects: 7
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 2
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 1
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Louisiana: 163

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 54
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 52
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 9
  • Gallmaker insects: 8
  • Root-feeding insects: 7
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Plant disease vectors: 3
  • Biological control agents of insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Invertebrate predators : 2
  • Decaying-matter feeding insects – saprophagous: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 1
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1

Maine: 73

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 26
  • Chewing insects: 9
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 8
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Maryland: 64

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 14
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 10
  • Chewing insects: 8
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1

Massachusetts: 89

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 28
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 15
  • Chewing insects: 10
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 5
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Xylophagous insects: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Biological control agents of insects: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1

Michigan: 410

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 167
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 132
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 28
  • Gallmaker insects: 19
  • Root-feeding insects: 16
  • Chewing insects: 11
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 7
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 3
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 3
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1

Minnesota: 390

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 159
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 108
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 20
  • Gallmaker insects: 20
  • Root-feeding insects: 19
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 19
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 12
  • Chewing insects: 11
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 5
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1

Mississippi: 52

  • Boring insects: 6
  • Chewing insects: 5
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 5
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 4
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 4
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Biological control agents of insects: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 2
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 2
  • Omnivorous foragers: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Missouri: 261

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 107
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 95
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 12
  • Gallmaker insects: 11
  • Root-feeding insects: 8
  • Plant disease vectors: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Montana: 107

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 34
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 25
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 9
  • Root-feeding insects: 7
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 6
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Gallmaker insects: 3
  • Invertebrate predators 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

 Nebraska: 215

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 88
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 74
  • Gallmaker insects: 14
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 12
  • Root-feeding insects: 10
  • Plant disease vectors: 4
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Boring insects: 2
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

 Nevada: 83

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 29
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 16
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 8
  • Root-feeding insects: 7
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 6
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1

New Hampshire: 59

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 18
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 8
  • Chewing insects: 8
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 5
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

 New Jersey: 59

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 22
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 10
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 8
  • Boring insects: 8
  • Chewing insects: 8
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Xylophagous insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1

 New Mexico: 44

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 10
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 6
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Nuisance insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1

 New York: 112

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 32
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 15
  • Chewing insects: 12
  • Boring insects: 10
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 8
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 8
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 6
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Xylophagous insects: 2
  • Biological control agents of insects: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1

North Carolina: 76

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 14
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 12
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Chewing insects: 7
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 5
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Biological control agents of insects: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1

North Dakota: 32

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 9
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 8
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 1
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 1
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 1

Ohio: 88

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 22
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 14
  • Chewing insects: 11
  • Boring insects: 9
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1

Oklahoma: 38

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 7
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Biological control agents of insects: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Nuisance insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1

Oregon: 115

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 25
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 22
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 12
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 10
  • Root-feeding insects: 8
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 7
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 5
  • Qallmaker insects: 3
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators : 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 2
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Biological control agents of insects: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 1

Pennsylvania: 98

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 27
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 14
  • Chewing insects: 11
  • Boring insects: 9
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 8
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 8
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 4
  • Root-feeding insects: 3
  • Invertebrate predators : 3
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Rhode Island: 57

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 17
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 10
  • Chewing insects: 7
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Boring insects: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 3
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 2
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Biological control agents of insects: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1

South Carolina: 54

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 10
  • Boring insects: 8
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 5
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 4
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Nuisance insects: 2
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 2
  • Biological control agents of insects: 2
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Xylophagous insects: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1

South Dakota: 251

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 90
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 64
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 25
  • Root-feeding insects: 15
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 14
  • Qallmaker insects: 13
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 10
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 5
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Plant disease vectors: 4
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1

Tennessee: 62

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 9
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 9
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Chewing insects: 6
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Invertebrate predators: 4
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 3
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 2
  • Nuisance insects: 2
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Omnivorous foragers: 1
  • Biological control agents of insects: 1

Texas: 71

  • Sucking/piercing insects: 12
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 9
  • Chewing insects: 7
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 6
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Invertebrate parasites and parasitoids: 4
  • Biological control agents of insects: 4
  • Boring insects: 4
  • Nuisance insects: 3
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 3
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 2
  • Omnivorous foragers: 2
  • Invertebrate predators : 2
  • Decaying-matter feeding insects – saprophagous: 1
  • Root-feeding insects: 1
  • Nectar and pollen feeding insects: 1
  • Blood feeding insects – sanguinivorous: 1
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Spiders, scorpions, and centipedes: 1

Utah: 108

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 34
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 22
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 13
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Root-feeding insects: 7
  • Boring insects: 6
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 6
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Chewing insects: 3
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1

Vermont: 62

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 22
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 9
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Boring insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 4
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 4
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 3
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 1
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 1

Virginia: 83

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 19
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 15
  • Boring insects: 9
  • Chewing insects: 9
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Fungus feeding insects – mycophagous: 3
  • Root-feeding insects: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 1
  • Nuisance insects: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 1
  • Chewing insects (stinger): 1

Washington: 121

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 30
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 18
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 12
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 10
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 9
  • Root-feeding insects: 8
  • Chewing insects: 8
  • Boring insects: 7
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 4
  • Invertebrate predators: 3
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 2

 Virginia: 62

  • Foliage-feeding Insects: 15
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 9
  • Chewing Insects: 8
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 7
  • Boring Insects: 5
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 3
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 3
  • Root-feeding Insects: 3
  • Invertebrate Predators: 2
  • Biological Control Agents of Weeds: 2
  • Chewing Insects (Stinger): 1
  • Foliage & Other Plant Parts Feeder: 1
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 1
  • Spiders, Scorpions, and Centipedes: 1
  • Gallmaker Insects: 1

Wisconsin: 450

  • Foliage-feeding insects: 193
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 151
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 24
  • Gallmaker insects: 20
  • Root-feeding insects: 19
  • Chewing insects: 12
  • Plant disease vectors: 6
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 6
  • Boring insects: 6
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 5
  • Needlemining/leafmining insects: 2
  • Casebearers, leafrollers and bagworms: 2
  • Biological control agents of weeds: 2
  • Foliage & other plant parts feeder: 1
  • Invertebrate predators: 1

Wyoming: 90

  • Biological control agents of weeds: 33
  • Foliage-feeding insects: 18
  • Fruit/bud/flower/cone/seed-damaging insects: 9
  • Shoot/stem/tip/terminal insects: 6
  • Phloem-feeding insects/bark beetles: 6
  • Boring insects: 6
  • Root-feeding insects: 5
  • Chewing insects: 2
  • Gallmaker insects: 2
  • Invertebrate predators: 1
  • Sucking/piercing insects: 1
  • Mites and ticks: 1
Japanese beetle on a green leaf.

The Japanese beetle is counted among the many invasive species in the US.

Wrapping Up

Invasive insect populations are a significant problem in the U.S., with the potential to cause significant damage to the environment, agriculture, and human health. Effective management and control of invasive species require a multi-pronged approach that addresses the underlying factors contributing to their spread and impact. This includes prevention, early detection and rapid response, biological control, chemical control, integrated pest management, and restoration and rehabilitation.

The implications of invasive insect species are complex and evolving, with potential impacts from climate change, globalization, innovation, policy and funding, and public awareness. Therefore, it’s important to continue developing and implementing effective management strategies and policies to prevent the spread of invasive species and reduce their impact.


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About the Author

Alan is a freelance writer and an avid traveler. He specializes in travel content. When he visits home he enjoys spending time with his family Rottie, Opie.

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