Any member of the beetle family Scolytidae, many of which severely damage trees. Bark beetles are cylindrical, brown or black, and usually less than 0.25 in. (6 mm) long. A male and females (as many as 60 females with each male) bore into a tree and form a chamber where each female deposits her eggs. The emerging larvae bore away from the chamber, forming a characteristic series of tunnels. Different species attack particular trees, damaging roots, stems, seeds, or fruits. Some species transmit disease (e.g., elm bark beetles carry spores of the fungal Dutch elm disease).
Bark beetle (Dendroctonus valens)—William E. Ferguson
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on bark beetle, visit Britannica.com.
Seen & Heard
What made you look up bark beetle? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.