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Japanese Beetle Traps

Control of Japanese Beetles Using Traps

Japanese beetle traps are sold in many garden and home improvement centers and aid in the control and extermination of these pests. However, it should be noted that traps will only help prevent the adults from feeding on certain plants and shrubs. Along with using traps to control the adult population, some sort of lawn maintenance program to control the larvae, or grubs, should be executed as well.

Commercially available traps attract the beetles with two types of baits or pheromones. Pheromones are chemical substances that are released by insects or other organisms into the environment to communicate with others of the same species.

One of the traps available is bait with a sex pheromone that mimics the scent of female beetles and is highly attractive to males. The other bait is a food-type lure, or pheromone, that attracts both sexes. These types of attractants are so powerful that they can literally draw in thousands of beetles per day.

However, they do have their drawbacks as well. Research has showed that the traps attract many more beetles than are actually caught. As a result, plants along the flight path of the beetles and in the area of traps are likely to suffer much more damage than if no traps are used at all. Therefore, one should take into consideration whether to use a trap as a means of control or seek out other cultural (habitat modification) or physical (removal by hand) controls.

If you decide to use these traps along with the lures, placement will be a major factor so that other plants do not get harmed. The traps should be placed away from other plants and garden crops. Some exterminators and lawn control professionals that provide and use these types of traps, suggest placing them over a water bucket to increase the area of capture with the result of eliminating a higher number of beetles. However, this will only eliminate those that are present and will not do anything for the larvae that may already be in the developmental stages in the lawn.

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