Know The Signs of Mole Crickets
Adult mole crickets lay eggs in the soil, and the immature mole crickets will live in the soil until they are full grown, where they feed and tunnel.
Mole cricket damage includes tunnelling, which causes grass to dry out and feeding on the roots, which causes grass to die.
When inspecting for mole crickets in your yard, it's important to know signs of mole crickets in your yard, and when this mole cricket damage will become apparent in your yard.
Identify Mole Cricket Damage
Mole crickets cause a lot of damage by tunnelling under the surface of your turf, feeding on roots of grass and other organic matter in the soil. The tunnelling can cause extensive damage to your turf:
- Since tunnelling generally occurs close to the surface, small bulges may be visible on the top of your turf and soil.
- Your lawn may feel spongy because it has become detached from the roots.
- In areas where there has been tunnelling activity, the grass will brown and die.
- Feeding activity will also cause grass to dies
When To Look For Damage
Mole crickets lay eggs in the soil around early spring or summer, where the mole cricket nymphs (immature mole crickets) will develop and feed underground. You will see the adult mole crickets flying and mating at this time.
The damage from feeding nymphs will likely not become apparent until the nymphs have gotten large, which happens in the spring after the overwintered nymphs begin feeding again when temperatures warm up. While this will tip you off to the presence of mole crickets in your yard, and the damage will be obvious, this isn't a great time to treat, since the crickets will be large and more resistant to treatment.
Inspect For Nymphs In Summer
Even though mole cricket damage will be minimal in the summer, it is the best time to treat. You can inspect your lawn for juvenile mole crickets by applying a detergent and water solution (about 2 tablespoons of soap to 5 litres of water) to your soil in the areas that have experienced damage in the spring. Test only a few square meters of your turf to keep the solution concentrated, and after a few minutes, if mole crickets are present they will emerge. This is best done in the early morning or evening.
What Kills Mole Crickets?
The key to a successful mole cricket treatment is timing. When the mole crickets are small and young, they are much easier to control, but there will be little to no visible damage at this time.
When damage is visible, usually in the summer, mole crickets are much larger and robust, which makes them harder to control. The best time to treat for moles crickets will be in the early life stages, just after hatching when they are the most vulnerable.
Map Out Problem Areas
In the spring, when mole cricket damage is most obvious, take note of where the damage has occurred. Mapping out the areas of damage will help you apply products in the right areas in the summer.
In early summer, you can test the problem areas by applying a soapy water solution to a few meters of your turf. If a few mole crickets emerge after a few minutes, you're in the right area.
Apply Products At The Right Time
Controlling mole crickets soon after they hatch will offer faster knockdown of the current population and will help to avoid extensive damage later in the year.
- Apply to areas that have experienced mole cricket damage in the spring.
- It is important that the soil has adequate moisture so the product can penetrate the soil. Some products require irrigation after application, some require irrigation before application.
- Greenturion Pest Control uses only products that are labelled to control mole crickets, often products that contain pyrethroids, in granules, liquids, and bait formulas.
Act During Early Stages of Life Cycle
While you likely won't be able to prevent mole crickets from entering your yard and laying eggs in your soil, you can take steps to prevent damage by treating mole crickets early in their life cycle.
Use a long-term residual product for mole crickets, which will help to work as soon as the eggs hatch, before the young mole crickets are able to cause any damage.
Apply A Long Residual Product
With a long residual treatment, you have a bit more flexibility with application timing, but you must still aim to apply before egg hatch. The product can be applied before eggs hatch in late spring, and it will continue to work to kill just-hatched mole crickets, which will prevent them from causing any damage or growing any larger.
A residual preventative product can be a liquid or granular formula. Make sure to read the label carefully to ensure that the product is registered to work against mole crickets, and also follow all application directions carefully.
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