Identifying Common Lawn Pests

by Anza Goodbar
(last updated February 17, 2012)

1

Lawn pests come in all different shapes and sizes. Not all pests eat the grass or turn it brown the damage they cause can be costly and annoying to deal with.

Moles are considered a pest by anyone who has them in their yard. Even though they do not eat the grass or roots, the tunnels they dig can cause the ground to collapse and leave gaping holes in the lawn. Other pests who do eat grasses and roots can also use these tunnels for easy access to their feeding ground without being easily detected.

Crickets feed on grass and tunnel through the ground. Mole crickets leave small mounds of earth near their burrowing. They lay their eggs underground where they live most of their lives. They feed on the grass just under the surface, if left untreated, the grass will be destroyed and only bare earth will be left.

Lawn caterpillars are greenish brown or fleshy white in color. They attack the grass just above the thatch layer which will cause yellow or brown patches if left untreated.

C-shaped white grubs are identified by their three pairs of legs, bluish abdomen and brown head. They are the larvae of scarab beetles and can live from three months to three years in the soil or thatch areas. They feed on humus and grass roots. They kill the grass roots and leave the blades of grass to wither and die.

Spittlebugs are less than 1/2 inch long and have distinctive orange stripes across their wings. They lay their orange eggs in the hollow stems of the thatch. When the eggs hatch they start to suck the juice from the grass. They then cover themselves with massive amounts of frothy spittle. When a lawn is infested with them, the ground appears squishy when walked upon.

Chinch bugs are tiny. When they infest grasses, the grasses turn shades of red. Just like spittlebugs, they suck juices from the grasses, but they also release toxins that kill the grass. Chinch bugs love the warmth of the sun and they normally feed out on the open. Once infested, they can be difficult to get rid of them.

Cutworms grow up to about two inches in length and tend to be plump and grayish in color. They live just under the ground and feed primarily at night. They kill the grass by cutting the blades off at the stem.

Harvester termites build subterranean nests and can be identified by locating small mounds of soil at the surface. They feed at night or on cool days above ground. The termites cut off blades of grass and carry them back to their next to feed.

Before resorting to pesticides, consider using soapy water in their holes, waiting for them to surface and removing them by hand. This also works for getting rid of moles. If all else fails, consider putting dog excrement down the tunnels, this is a sure fire fix!

Author Bio

Anza Goodbar

Anza is a single mother of four who makes her home in Colorado. She enjoys writing, hiking and is an avid football and hockey fan. She is the owner of a virtual business services company; writing is just one of the many services her company offers. ...

MORE FROM ANZA

Compensating for Thick Legs

As with any body type, it is important to learn how to accentuate your best features and create illusions to hide your least ...

Discover More

Understanding Interest Rates

Interest rates are the fee charged for borrowing money. Interest rates can be directly tied to your credit score.

Discover More

Preventing Flower Garden Pests

No garden is exempt from pests. Being proactive can reduce the damage and restore a healthy flower garden.

Discover More

Keep Mice Away! Rodent Defense Mice Repellent is a must-have tool for eliminating or preventing mice. All-natural ingredients are nontoxic and can be used safely around children and pets. Create a barrier to mice around your home! Check out Rodent Defense Mice Repellent today!

More Pest Tips

Preventing Flower Garden Pests

No garden is exempt from pests. Being proactive can reduce the damage and restore a healthy flower garden.

Discover More

Keeping Rabbits Out of Your Yard

Rabbits, while they may look all cute and fluffy, can be some really nasty pests when it comes to your yard or garden. ...

Discover More

Managing Flower Garden Pests

While flower gardens can bring some beauty and peace to your life, pests can easily ruin that peace. Managing flower garden ...

Discover More
Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is three more than 5?

2014-02-10 05:52:00

sue northmore

How do I treat the CRICKET PROBLEM of destroying the grass?

Thanks