Residents reminded to protect lawns against European Chafer Beetle

As summer comes to a close, Fredericton residents are reminded to protect their lawns against the European Chafer Beetle.

The European Chafer Beetle is an invasive pest. Their larvae, also called grubs, feed on the roots of grass causing serious damage to lawns. Grubs will emerge as beetles in late June or early July and lay new larvae. These new grubs will then feed on grass roots from late summer to early fall and early in the new year often attracting animals such as racoons, skunks and crows who dig up lawns to eat them.

Residents are encouraged to consider applying the parasitic roundworm called nematodes to treat and control larvae populations. Keeping lawns tidy and trimmed, along with a thorough fall leaf pickup and yard cleanup, may also help to reduce the spread of the larvae.

“The European Chafer Beetle is a pest that can cause significant damage to property," said Coun. Henri Mallet, Chair of the City of Fredericton Community Services Committee. “Residents should take the necessary steps to protect their properties.”

Native to Western and Central Europe, the European Chafer Beetle first appeared in Canada in British Columbia in 2002. The pest is also found in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.

Other options for addressing the problem include replacing a beetle-infested lawn with a hardier and beetle-resistant option such as a lawn consisting of micro-clover, tall fescue or creeping thyme. Residents may also wish to look at alternative landscaping options such as gardens or synthetic turf.