The European Chafer beetle has been spotted in Revelstoke, causing some concern among residents.
The European Chafer beetle, according to the Government of British Columbia, is a medium sized, tan, scarab beetle that its roughly 12 mm long. Once the beetles reach their adult stage, they are no longer a threat to an ecosystem, but when they’re grubs, they can do significant damage to residents’ lawns.
The European Chafer beetle is relatively new to Revelstoke but isn’t new to British Columbia. The beetles were found in New Westminster in 2001.
The grubs feed on all types of grass, but in the absence of grass, they have been known to migrate to other plants/crops. Without grass the grubs sometimes move to corn, potatoes, blueberries, conifers and others. If the plant has a fibrous root, the European Chafer could be a threat.
The noticeable damage of the grubs ordinarily doesn’t show up until the fall. The grubs inhabit moist environments and eat away at roots in the fall and early spring, which is why residents are noticing them now.
To check for the grubs, the Government of British Columbia recommended cutting three sides of a 30 x 30 cm piece of sod, 5 cm deep. Fold back the sod and count the grubs. If there are more than 20 grubs, the Government of BC suggests trying to control it.
Depending on the level of irrigation that the property has, no action may be necessary. Well-irrigated soil can stand up to a small number of grubs. However, if the infestation is more significant, the Government of BC suggests using nematodes that can destroy the grubs, pesticides. Timing for the nematodes or pesticides is key and the BC Government suggested mid-July to September is the best time to apply.
For more information about the European Beetle in B.C., head to the Government of BC’s website, which has even more information about them.
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