Sirex woodwasp 
Sirex noctilio
Image by David R. Lance

Sirex Wood Wasp

Sirex Woodwasp Map

Sirex wood wasp pest distribution map

Sirex Wood Wasp

Sirex woodwasp—Sirex noctilio F. (Hymenoptera: Siricidae) is an invasive insect that attacks pine species, including Scots Pine and Red Pine.  It was found in Oswego County in 2004 and since then has spread throughout much of New York State. In its native range of Eurasia and North Africa, sirex woodwasp is considered a secondary pest which attacks suppressed and stressed trees. However, where introduced in the Southern Hemisphere, it attacks exotic pine plantations and causes severe mortality.  Research of a parasitic nematode and several hymenopteran parasitoids as biological control agents, many of which are native to North America, have been successful.

Females inject a symbiotic fungus, toxic mucus, and eggs (25-450) into stressed trees. The synergistic effect of the fungus and mucus, not the actual insect, cause to weaken and kill trees.


New York Invasive Species Information - Sirex Woodwasp from the New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse at Cornell University, includes information on history and range, identification, biology, signs and symptoms, damage caused in New York and in the rest of the US, and methods of management and control. 

Sirex Woodwasp Factsheet from the USDA Forest Service, describes the insect, and includes photos and information on identification, distribution, signs of infestation, biology of the wood wasp, and biological controls.

Species Profile from the USDA's National Invasive Species Information Center, includes images, distribution and many state, national and academic fact sheets on the species.

Last updated October 4, 2023