Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub


    There are more than 36,000 species of Cerambycidae recognized throughout the world (see Chapter 1), occurring on all continents except Antarctica (Linsley 1959). Given such numbers, it is not surprising that cerambycids display great diversity in their feeding habits. Both adults and larvae are almost exclusively phytophagous. Some adults appear not to feed at all, while others feed daily. Larvae primarily utilize woody host plants, but some species develop within herbaceous plants. Cerambycid larvae infest nearly all plant parts, especially stems, branches, and roots, as well as feed on nearly all plant tissues, especially bark, cambium, and wood. As expected in such a large insect family, some cerambycids are strictly monophagous while others are highly polyphagous. Similarly, some cerambycids infest live, healthy plants while others develop in dead plants; likewise, some species prefer moist wood, while others prefer dry wood. Cerambycid larvae are able to digest woody tissues with the aid of enzymes that they sometimes secrete themselves or that they obtain from symbionts. Many details on the feeding biology of cerambycids will be provided in this chapter, including the types of food consumed by adults and larvae, the common parts of plants that larvae infest and the tissues they consume, and aspects of wood digestion.

    Publication Notes

    • Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
    • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
    • During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
    • Please contact Sharon Hobrla, if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Haack, Robert A. 2017. Feeding biology of cerambycids. Chapter 3. In: Wang, Qiao, ed. Cerambycidae of the world; biology and pest management. Boca Raton, FLP CRC Press: 105-124.

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page