Several types of beetles may emerge from firewood that is stored indoors. Check firewood logs for small, round holes in the bark. Bark beetles are 1/4 inch or less in length, cylindrical in shape and red, black or brown in color. They may be found around windows, lamps, or woodpiles near the fireplace, especially during the winter.
Larger wood boring beetles may also be seen. They may be metallic wood borers (e.g. two-lined chestnut borer, approximately 1/2 inch long, narrow, variously colored, with short antennae) or long-horned beetles (e.g. red-headed ash borer, 1/2 inch or longer, narrow, variously colored, long antennae and legs, not metallic). Sawdust may be found under the firewood and oval or D-shaped exit holes may be present in the bark of logs.
Beetles may emerge from firewood that has been stored indoors for several days or more. As the wood warms, the beetles assume it is spring and emerge. They may fly around the house or congregate at windows trying to get outdoors. Vacuum and dispose of the beetles in the trash outdoors. Only store enough firewood in the home for a day or two to prevent the beetles from emerging.
By Mary Kay Malinoski, Extension Specialist, University of Maryland Extension, Home & Garden Information Center
Have a plant or pest question? University of Maryland Extension’s experts have answers! Send your questions and photos to Ask an Expert.