Mole crickets are just one infestation you have to watch out for when caring for your lawn. Because they live underneath the ground, it can be very difficult to manage them, but their effects are disastrous. This post reviews mole crickets and how to prevent them from taking over your lawn.
What are mole crickets and what are their dangers?
Mole crickets are moderately-sized insects measuring between 1-2 inches in length. They are brown and are easily recognized by their thick skull. Mole crickets are most commonly found in the Southeastern United States, where they were first introduced by ships traveling northward from South America in the 19th century. There is no turf species that is immune to mole crickets, although they prefer the Bahia Grass and Bermuda varieties. Ultimately, they are affected more by temperature than by turf variety. After burying tunnels underground, they tear up soil and create large, unsightly mounds. If you have large dead patches on your lawn, this could also be a result of mole crickets. Needless to see, an outbreak of mole crickets can be a real source of embarrassment. When temperatures rise above 60 degrees, they feed on grass roots. Mole crickets are an important topic during this time of year because they mate in the Spring; they can produce hundreds of eggs in a year. Although males typically die shortly after mating, the “damage has been done” if an infestation breaks out in your soil.
How can mole crickets be prevented?
In order to prevent mole crickets, you really need to make sure that your soil is healthy. Use a slow-release fertilizer, and water the lawn on a regular basis. It is also important to keep your mowing height appropriate, as you do not want to scalp your lawn and tear into the soil. Ultimately, mole crickets are tricky to monitor but easily preventable through standard lawn care practice.