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Pine bark anobiid

An adult pine bark anobiid

An adult pine bark anobiid (photos courtesy of PaDIL, Pests and Diseases Image Library),

A dorsal view of a pine bark anobiid

Dorsal view of a pine bark anobiid.

General information

The pine bark anobiid is a pest of untreated, exotic pine logs that retain some bark. There are about 1100 species of anobiid beetles (Family Anobiidae) worldwide, but only about 200 of these occur in Australia.

In Queensland, four species of anobiid may be found in or around buildings; the Queensland pine beetle and the common furniture beetle, a native of Europe, are of economic significance, while the pine bark anobiid and the cigarette beetle are of minor importance.

Changes to building practices have decreased the risk of attack to timber-in-service and reports of damage have become less frequent.

Scientific name

Ernobius mollis

  • The adult is up to 5 mm in length and similar to a large common furniture beetle.
  • When newly emerged, it is covered with fine golden hairs, and appears to be golden brown, darkening as the pale hairs are worn away.
  • The elytra are smooth, distinguishing it from the common furniture beetle, which has longitudinal rows of dark marks or ´punctures´.
  • The wing-cases and other parts are soft and much less horny than in the common furniture beetle.
Similar species
  • common furniture beetle Anobium punctatum
  • It may be found throughout Queensland.
Life cycle and habits
  • Development requires one year and adults are present only in the spring and early summer.
  • The presence of bark is essential for its development.
  • Larvae may burrow long distances in the bark and wood and in the process may damage other materials in contact with the wood, for example, leather and plastic.
  • Emerging adults can also cause damage by boring through veneer or other materials around the infested bark - the flight hole is round and about 2 mm in diameter.
  • Attacks can be prevented by removing all bark from susceptible timber or logs.

Last updated 09 May 2013