Japanese beetles attacking local plants and crops - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Japanese beetles attacking local plants and crops

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BLACK HAWK COUNTY (KWWL) -

The drought isn't the only factor harming local trees and plants. An old pest is invading the area.

It's called the Japanese beetle and it's creating significant damage.

"They have been eating the leaves off the trees and making a big mess in the grass obviously. And they've just been flying everywhere," said Amanda Poyner, a Hudson resident.

Poyner's tress have been hit hard by the beetles. First, she tried spraying her trees. When that didn't work, she purchased a Japanese beetle trap that fills up with beetles everyday.

Aable Pest Control Manager, Mike Price, believes the drought may be one reason the trees seem to be hit so hard.

"Trees aren't as strong as they would be in a normal year so they're a lot more apt to die this year from damage to Japanese beetles than a year with a lot of rain," said Mike Price.

Experts say Japanese beetles are present for six to eight weeks every summer and only live for 30 to 45 days. However, they are present all year long, likely burrowed in your yard as grubs during the fall and winter.

Price says that the Japanese beetle traps are not the best way to get rid of the beetles. They are more likely to attract more to your yard. He suggests different steps to handle the pests now.

"What I recommend is spraying your trees with what is labeled for Japanese beetles, you know we say read the label. It doesn't mean every insect is on there. We sell stuff here that people can buy. Treating your own yard, I recommend granulars. Get out shortly after and water your grass. When you do that to activate the granulars and get them down into the root system," said Price.

Luckily the adult beetles should be dying off in the next couple of weeks. To prevent the beetles from returning next year, experts say September and early spring are the best times to treat your yard.

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