Cockchafer – habitat and developmental stage. What the May bug feeds on and how to get rid of larvae

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Chafer beetle (Melolontha pectoralis) belongs to the genus lamellar. Its name came from the month of the highest vital activity of the insect. Despite the attractive appearance, he is able to inflict great damage to the forest park zone, forests and summer cottages. Nowadays, there are a large number of ways to deal with these insects..

May beetles

There are 3 orders of beetles: Western European, Eastern and rare. Within this classification, there are about 25 subspecies that are large in size. Each of the 3 species during the period of active movement is capable of destroying several hectares of young forest during the night. The flight speed of an adult reaches up to 3 meters per second, and the flight altitude ranges up to 100 meters. Such a feature as flying along a direct trajectory still remains a mystery to entomologists. Another characteristic part of physiology is the direction of the head at rest: north or east.

The bug looks inconspicuous: the body is oval in shape, and the color, depending on the species, can be black or red. Contrary to the laws of aerodynamics, 2 double wings attached to the chest are able to lift their own body weight and move it over long distances. He has three pairs of legs. There is a main organ – antennae, which helps with the search for food. In addition, he has excellent vision. Digestive organ – jaws. The pest beetle actively manifests itself in night conditions, which complicates the fight against it..

Where does the May bug live?

May Khrushchev (its second name) can be found in any country in the world, except for permafrost. If we talk about the general habitat, then the eastern ones have chosen for themselves high crowns of trees, but the West European May beetles live on hills and forested hills. On the territory of Russia there are several subspecies that can be found in different parts of the country, including in Yakutia.

What does the Maybug adult eat?

An adult eats exclusively the leaves of trees such as maple, linden, birch, mountain ash and almost all fruit trees and shrubs, while he does not use grass. Another feature: beetles feed not only on leaves, but also on flowers, fruit ovaries, and do not neglect needles. Mostly time zhora: april-may, after winter 8-month hibernation.

Maybug on a plant

Maybug Larva

Reproduction occurs by laying eggs (they look large, dirty white), and development – in three stages: larva, pupa, adult. Adult May Khrushchev does not live long. The female lays eggs (only underground) in 2-3 calls, for a total of up to 70 pieces, and dies during the last laying. Males die after the act of fertilization of the female. An individual for laying eggs always returns to the place where she was born. The larva looks like a small but fat twisted worm and is highly mobile.

Chafer beetle larva – habitat

The habitat of the May beetle larvae before the process of emergence of adults (hatching of adult beetle from pupa) is the space underground. It can take up to 5 years from the moment you exit the egg to the imago. During the period of vigorous activity – it can be found during digging of the earth, and in the fall the larva goes deep up to 1 meter for hibernation, in the spring it returns to the roots.

What does the Maybug larva eat?

If an adult beetle is a threat to the ovary and foliage, then the larva brings much greater damage, because it damages the roots. Reliable fact: during the night 1 larva can completely destroy the roots of a 2-year-old tree. According to the observations of scientists, the larva of the May beetle eats the roots of plants, depending on the degree of development:

  • 1 year: eats the root system of herbaceous plants;
  • 2 year: devours the roots of young trees and shrubs;
  • 3 year: the roots of adult trees go into nutrition.

Maybug Larva

Fighting the Maybug Larva

Due to the underground lifestyle, the struggle with the larvae of the May beetle is very complicated. Nevertheless, there are proven ways against them. These include both the use of insecticides and folk recipes. No less effective way to destroy the larvae is soil sodding. To do this, green manure is planted around a tree or shrub, for example, white clover. If we consider the natural enemies of the larvae, then these are birds, hedgehogs and some parasite insects.

Remedies for Maybug larvae

Every year, scientists are trying to invent a “smart” drug that would destroy the larvae, but did not accumulate in the plant itself. Now there are a number of effective remedies for Maybug larvae that help fight them, depending on the type of exposure to the body of the insect:

  • Zemlin. In addition to khrushch, it destroys other pests that live in the earth. Dosage: 50 g per 1 kg of soil.
  • Nemabakt. Destroys larvae within 1-3 days. Safe for pets and plants. Proportion 1: 100. Watering is carried out in the morning or evening. Only effective against insect.
  • Repair it. An analogue of Zemlin, but the composition is in the form of granules. It is necessary to use it when planting plants, throwing several granules into the ground. It starts to operate on the next day.
  • Actara. It does not require special weather conditions. It is soluble in water or mixed with soil. You can apply at any time of the year.
  • Antichrush. Available in the form of a suspension. It is steady against a rain and for a long time keeps the protective properties.
  • Bazudin. The danger is only for fish. Mix granules with sand (3/4 liter jar). For cabbage protection: 10 g of mixture per 10 m2, for cabbage: 15 g per 10 m2.
  • Vallard. Prepare a solution at the rate of 8 g of the drug per 1 liter of water and withstand the roots. It is forbidden to water with such a solution.

Means Bazudin Extra

Folk remedies for Maybug larvae

Folk remedies for Maybug larvae bring good results. These include:

  • Mechanical collection. Ineffective, but not costly way. Larvae should be sought at a depth of 10-20 cm from the ground cover.
  • Planting of lupins, elderberries and other representatives of the cruciferous family. Mustard shoots and cabbage leaves are buried in the soil.
  • A solution of ammonia or ammonia and water to treat the delicate roots of strawberries and strawberries.
  • Nitrogen fixers. These include white clover, peas, beans, beans. The bacteria isolating the roots of these plants nitrogen makes it impossible to continue the life cycle and development of the larva. In autumn, these plants can be dug with the ground as a green fertilizer..

To combat adult insects, they use various kinds of light traps at night, lures based on sweet syrup, and collection in the morning when the May beetle is in a sleeping state. In the spring, you can mix the earth with chloride compounds. The characteristic smell of chlorine, like lime, does not allow the larvae who prefer oxygen to breathe.

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