Although some lizards eat plants, most lizards feed on insects. In California, the most common types feed on beetles, ants, wasps, aphids, grasshoppers, and spiders. Lizards cause no measurable damage to plants in gardens and may be beneficial by eating pest insects and should be left alone.
Occasionally, however, lizards can enter homes and buildings through small openings, especially gaps beneath doors. They are excellent climbers so they can enter at any structural opening 1/4 inch or larger. Should a lizard enter your home, there are several ways to capture and release it outdoors.
Find out more about how to keep lizards out of your house in our recently updated Pest Note
- Author: Ria DeBiase
Nursery workers are the first line of defense in detecting light brown apple moth when growing ornamental plants in commercial nurseries. A new brochure and video can help those in the field distinguish light brown apple moth from several look-alike caterpillars.
Light brown apple moth is currently under a California Department of Food and Agriculture quarantine that regulates the interstate shipment of plants to keep the moth from spreading to new areas. It has been quarantined in various counties throughout coastal California...
- Author: Karey Windbiel-Rojas
Halloween is the perfect time to talk about some of the creepy, crawlies that scare people the most: Spiders.
Many people think that all spiders are dangerous, scary, and aggressive. Most spiders are harmless and serve a beneficial role by catching and killing pest insects.
There are many different types of spiders inhabiting homes and gardens. In California, the main spider capable of causing serious injury is the black widow, which generally remains outdoors and out of sight. Spiders seen out in the open during the day are unlikely to bite people.
The UC Statewide IPM Program has lots of information to help you identify
Contrary to popular belief, insects are not a common cause of residential lawn damage in California, Lack of proper cultural care and use of inappropriate grass species in a particular location are much more likely to cause unhealthy or dying lawns than insects.
However, certain insects may occasionally damage or kill turfgrass. Insect feeding can cause grass to turn yellow or brown or die, especially if the grass is already stressed. Damage usually begins in small, scattered patches, which may merge into large dead areas. Insects that may cause damage in California lawns include various root-, crown-, and leaf-feeding caterpillars; grubs, which include the larvae of scarab beetles such as the black turfgrass ataenius and...
Every year, California receives, on average, six new exotic invasive pests of concern; that's about one new pest every 60 days. These may be plants, insects or other arthropods, mollusks, plant pathogens such as fungi and bacteria, vertebrates, or any other organism not native to our state and with the capacity to negatively impact agriculture, urban environments and/or natural ecosystems. These invasive pests enter California on plant material and other biological substrates, as hitchhikers on trade goods and in ship ballast water, and sometimes even because of smuggling operations. Without the natural enemies that kept them in check in their native lands, they are free to reproduce and wreak havoc. Such pest invasions may then lead to...