With the high level of cranefly activity across all areas of the UK, leatherjackets are likely to be a major issues this autumn. Signs of infestation include birds pecking at the grass, poor grass growth, yellow patches and the ability to pull the turf up as the pests feed on the grassroots. Early identification and treatment are essential in preventing secondary damage from the likes of badgers and foxes.
The Pesky Pests
There are two main lawn pests that thrive during the autumn months;
- Chafer Grub – The larvae of the Chafer Beetle, also known as a May Bug
- Leatherjackets – The larvae of the crane fly, also known as a daddy long longs
Chafer Grubs and Leatherjackets are the most common of all lawn pests and they feed on the roots of turf grasses, causing the plant to die back and have a straw-coloured appearance.
It is important that any infestations are treated during the autumn, preferably at the larvae stage to achieve the most efficient treatment.
If the infestation is left the larvae will have time to develop and the treatments will become less effective, resulting in major damage to your lawn.
Lawn Pest Treatment
Through the biological application of nematodes, these pesky pests that feed off the roots of the grass plant can be controlled.
- The pesky pests will stop feeding within 3 days of the treatment application
- The infestation will be fully controlled between 10-14 days after the treatment
Preventing Autumn Lawn Pests
The main way to prevent lawn pests from breeding is to regularly scarify your lawn.
Scarifying helps by removing the thatch layer that could potentially be protecting pests by shielding them from any treatments.
If pest control is necessary yet the lawn has a thatch layer greater than 50mm, we would advise that scarification and aeration would be beneficial prior to the pest control treatment being applied.
This is because those pesky pests don’t only feed on the roots of the plant, but organic matter as well. Therefore, the removal of the thatch not only removes part of their food source but increases the quality of the overall treatment.
If you notice any kind of infestation or need any other lawn services don’t hesitate to contact your local TruGreen lawncare technician here.