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sfusselman

Need some help.

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These are small elongated holes in cedar fences. Find them a lot here in Houston. When you probe the hole no bugs ever come out but a fine muddy substance can be dug out. I have a few pictures I have attached. Would like to know what kind of wood destroying insect this is that is creating this.

All help much appreciated. Thanks

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These are small elongated holes in cedar fences. Find them a lot here in Houston. When you probe the hole no bugs ever come out but a fine muddy substance can be dug out. I have a few pictures I have attached. Would like to know what kind of wood destroying insect this is that is creating this.

All help much appreciated. Thanks

Click to Enlarge
tn_2014432150_IMG_9982.jpg

74.81 KB

Click to Enlarge
tn_20144321524_IMG_9983.jpg

90.12 KB

Click to Enlarge
tn_20144321620_IMG_9984.jpg

68.08 KB

Wood boring beetles made that damage before the wood was milled. That's one of the reasons why it's being used for fences instead of something more important.

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3/4" T&G interior paneling was popular locally in the 1960's and early 70's that looked just like that. It was made of cypress and referred to as "pecky cypress" for reasons I never bothered to learn.

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3/4" T&G interior paneling was popular locally in the 1960's and early 70's that looked just like that. It was made of cypress and referred to as "pecky cypress" for reasons I never bothered to learn.

Not quite the same. While I'm sure that there was paneling that featured beetle damage, the stuff you're talking about suffered from a fungus called pecky rot. It looks superficially like beetle damage, but it's caused by decay. There's also something called pocket rot, that results in a perforated appearance. It can sometimes be mixed up with beetle damage as well.

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Here in LA I've seen damage like that done by wood boring bees. Seen the bee inside the hole with my own eyes and they chased me for it. Got a piece of cedar in my shop with that kind of damage. When I was growing up, we called them bumble bees. Got stung once on my back and couldn't sit down straight at the dinner table for a week. That insect loves cedar and cypress because both are soft. Won't burrow in anything else here.

PP beetles here are much smaller than the holes in that fence. PP is the only wood destroying beetle we see here.

What Jim said about being old damage.

'Course, this is coastal LA. Could be different in Cypress, Texas.

Marc

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Carpenter bees only make one small hole and then bore a long tunnel.

It's the woodpecker hunting them that makes the long openings!

And the pictures in the OP don't look like woodpecker damage.

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Thanks all for the help. I did not think they were from bees because those holes would be a little bigger and perfectly round about the size of dime. I figured they were beetles but never saw the bug so was not sure.

Again I appreciate the help. Also if any of you are performing WDI inspections would you write this up as a previous infestation even if they are not directly against the home?

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Thanks all for the help. I did not think they were from bees because those holes would be a little bigger and perfectly round about the size of dime. I figured they were beetles but never saw the bug so was not sure.

Again I appreciate the help. Also if any of you are performing WDI inspections would you write this up as a previous infestation even if they are not directly against the home?

No I wouldn't write it up, even if it was in a piece of framing lumber. It's not a sign of an infestation. It's damage that was done before the wood was milled.

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Jim: Thanks for the help very informative feedback. Just so I'm clear you feel it is in this condition even before the fence company installs it in the backyard right?

I will start paying attention to some of the newer fence boards I run across now too. Thanks again you all were great help.

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Just so I'm clear you feel it is in this condition even before the fence company installs it in the backyard right?

Without the slightest doubt.

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Jim: One last question. Any specifics on what type of wood boring beetle. They look to oval to be Powder post beetles. Just curious if you know exactly what beetle it is doing this creative art work.

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Jim: One last question. Any specifics on what type of wood boring beetle. They look to oval to be Powder post beetles. Just curious if you know exactly what beetle it is doing this creative art work.

"Powder Post Beetle" is a meaningless term. Everyone applies it to any beetle in a house.

The holes are much too large for Lyctids (true pp beetles) or Anobiids (commonly called pp beetles or deathwatch beetles). So we can rule them out.

If the cross section of the holes is round, then it might well be Bostrichids (false pp beetles).

On the other hand, if the cross section is oval, then it's probably some kind of Buprestid (flat-headed borer) or Cerambycid (round-headed borer).

If the wood came from the Pacific Northwest, I'd put my money on the Golden Buprestid Beetle. If it's from anywhere else, I wouldn't hazard a bet.

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