“Aphids are really bad this year!” This is what we've been hearing on social media and from many home gardeners. Aphids can curl leaves, stunt plant growth, and make a mess by the sticky honeydew they exude. Some aphid species create galls which can also damage plants. Low to moderate aphid infestations usually don't damage plants but if you do have more aphids this year, there are many options for controlling them.
Aphids in landscapes and gardens can be managed by a number of different methods, including biological control. Biological control is when naturally occurring beneficial insects, mites, or other organisms (also called natural enemies) reduce a pest's abundance by eating or parasitizing them.
- Author: Belinda J. Messenger-Sikes
Are bats good for the environment or are they pests? How about both? Almost all of the 25 species of bats in California eat lots of flying insects during their night flights, making them an important part of the ecosystem. But when they roost in buildings such as your home, they can become pests.
Bats roosting in outbuildings away from dwellings aren't much of a problem. Some people even place bat houses on their property to attract bats for assistance with pest control. But a colony of bats in your attic is cause for concern. Bats can spread human diseases like rabies and their droppings (called guano) can make a smelly mess.
If bats are a problem in your home, UC...
Register now for the Urban & Community IPM webinars! All webinar information and registration links are available on our webinar website. Webinars are the third Thursday of every month from 1:00-2:00pm Pacific time. Webinars are free and open to the public but you must register in advance.
- Author: Elaine Lander
While you are outside gardening or inside doing your spring cleaning, you may have recently found small, round, speckled beetles you've never seen before. We've had several questions this past week about insects crawling around windowsills, found on screens, or noticed on outdoor plants, or fuzzy, oblong insects on carpets or rugs. What are they? While there are many insects starting to emerge from their winter rest, if you are finding small beetles like these, they could be carpet beetles!
Carpet beetles are pests of homes, warehouses, and museums. In California, there are 3 species that damage fabrics, carpets, and stored foods including the varied carpet beetle,...