MDA confirms 2 invasive insects found in Minnesota for first time

Two invasive insects have found their way into Minnesota, state officials confirmed Wednesday.

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) says the elm seed bug and Asiatic garden beetle were found in homes last month and reported by the homeowners. The department then confirmed both findings, marking the first time those two insects have been confirmed in the state.

MDA says the elm seed bug primarily feeds on elm seeds but can also feed on linden and oak. It’s mostly considered a nuisance pest, like the box elder bug, and is most active in mid-June.

The bug is native to Europe and was first found in the U.S. in 2012 but is mostly in western states like Washington, Oregon and Utah, according to MDA.

The Asiatic garden beetle can be more of a problem, as it feeds on fruits, vegetables, perennials and annuals, which can lead to defoliation.

The beetle is native to Japan and China but has been in the U.S. since 1922. It’s mainly established in New England but is also in Illinois and Indiana.

MDA says the adult beetles typically emerge and feed at night and fly actively when temperatures are above 70 degrees.

Since both insects were just found in the state, MDA is asking anyone who sees them to report them online or by calling 1-888-545-6684. The agency also requests pictures with its reports.