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It's bugging me...

Posted by Leekle2ManE Lady Lake, FL 9a (My Page) on
Fri, Dec 7, 12 at 21:27

Looking to find out just what insect is plaguing my mother's... umm... tree. I'm not even really sure what kind of tree it is. Possibly a sycamore. My first thought was bark beetles, but after looking them up, I don't see the maze of paths and the holes are just too linear. I don't believe it is a woodpecker, as I don't think I've seen one drill lines like this. Plus these holes are all over the tree as far as 20' up. My mother says she hasn't seen any woodpeckers on the tree and if it were only a few holes, I would be willing to think she just missed it. But with so many of them on the tree, I think she would have seen/heard one at some time.

Thank you in advance for any assitance in identifying the culprit(s).

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: It's bugging me...

Figured it out. It is the work of Yellow-Bellied Sapsuckers.

RE: It's bugging me...

Yep, very typical of sapsucker damage.

RE: It's bugging me...

is that huge tree.. seriously ... inches from the house??? .. if so.. you might want to fully ID the tree ... and pay a certified professional .. for an opinion as to its structural stability ... and health ... sapsuckers MIGHT be the least of your problems .... are you in hurricane territory????

can we see a pic of the whole tree .. or perhaps in the tree forum ....

did you remove the bark ... to look at the holes??? .. that is some seriously aggressive sap sucking ....


RE: It's bugging me...

Yeah, it's about 3' from the patio to the base of the trunk. The eaves of the lanai make it look closer, but it is still closer than my mother would like it to have been. It was there when she moved in last spring and where she lives you have to get permission to remove trees. But she is fairly done with listening to the ball-like seedpods (which make me think it's a sycamore) dropping onto her lanai roof. She was actually hoping it would be something a little more serious than sapsuckers so that there would be an incentive to bring the entire thing down and replace it with a Sabal Palmetto or something nicer.

The bark damage is from the sapsuckers. Even the spots higher up where the sapsuckers have drilled are devoid of bark around the scars.

We got nailed pretty hard by the winds from TS Debbie this past summer and the tree took it fairly well. Better than other trees in her neighborhood.

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