Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Calendar
Upcoming Events

National Moth Week photos of insects and people. Here's how to add your images.

Photos of insects and people from the 2019 BugGuide Gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa


TaxonomyBrowse
Info
ImagesLinksBooksData

Species Cimbex americanus - Elm Sawfly

Mystery Hymenopteran I - Cimbex americanus insect on corn stalk - Cimbex americanus mating sawflies - Cimbex americanus - male - female Wasp species - Cimbex americanus  Cimbex americana Larvae  - Cimbex americanus Big (Wasp-mimic?) Sawfly ID [=Cimbex? americana??] ID Request - Cimbex americanus Elm sawfly larvae? - Cimbex americanus Elm Sawfly? - Cimbex americanus
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon ("Symphyta" - Sawflies, Horntails, and Wood Wasps)
Family Cimbicidae (Cimbicid Sawflies)
Genus Cimbex
Species americanus (Elm Sawfly)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Cimbex americana Leach 1817
synonym Cimbex americanus, perhaps preferred, as Cimbex is masculine--see iNaturalist discussion and BugGuide discussion
Size
adult 18-20 mm, larva up to 50 mm
Identification
The largest North American sawfly. Larvae yellowish-white with black dorsal stripe. While feeding, the larvae usually coil their posterior around a leaf or twig. At rest the larvae roll into a characteristic tight coil. The larvae spin tough, papery cocoons in the litter or just below the surface of the soil. Pink coloration is not common, most larvae are green to yellow in color.
Adult has glabrous thorax with white/yellow spot above, orange antennae. Females commonly have a yellow banded abdomen.
Range
most of NA (map)
Habitat
woodlands
Season
adults May-Jun(1)
Food
hosts include elm (Ulmus), maple (Acer), birch (Betula), willow (Salix), and basswood (Tilia); adults girdle bark on twigs
Life Cycle
Larvae have chemical defenses, ejecting fluids from glands near spiracles; often coil hind end around twigs; overwinter in cocoons, and pupate in spring

Larva Pupa Adult male Adult female Mating pair
Remarks
not considered a forestry problem, but can defoliate shade/ornamental elms and willows (Forestry images)
Works Cited
1.National Audubon Society Field Guide to Insects and Spiders
Lorus and Margery Milne. 1980. Knopf.