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Chinch Bug

Danger

Although chinch bugs can seriously damage your lawn, they are harmless to humans.

Did you know?

Adult chinch bugs are black and white with whitish wings and they are usually found on dry lawns where they puncture the grass blade with their needle-like beaks and suck the fluids out, leaving large irregular yellow patches that turn brown as the grass dies.

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At about 1/4 inch long, adult chinch bugs are black and white with whitish wings marked by a dark triangle on their outer margins. Nymphs are bright red in color with a white band across their back. Chinch bugs can also be recognized by their strong odor, especially when they're high in numbers or they've been crushed.

Chinch bugs are usually found on dry lawns where they puncture the grass blade with their needle-like beaks and suck the fluids out. As a result of their feeding, large irregular patches of lawn will begin to turn yellow, then brown as they die. The patches will often begin on the edges of lawns and even if being properly watered, will continue to get larger.

In spring or early summer, chinch bugs mate and females begin depositing eggs on the leaves and stems of grass. One female can lay over 250 eggs, which hatch in 1-2 weeks. Nymphs feed voraciously upon birth and pass through 5 instars before becoming adults.

How do l recognize chinch bugs?

At about 1/8 to 1/4 inches long, adult chinch bugs are black and white with whitish wings marked by a dark triangle on their outer margins. Nymphs are bright red in color with a white band across their back. Chinch bugs can also be recognized by their strong odor, especially when they're high in numbers or they've been crushed.

When are chinch bugs most active during the year?

Chinch bugs are not active during the winter months. They prefer warm, dry climates, which means that in warmer parts of the country, they can be active for most of the year.

What can I do to prevent a chinch bug infestation?

Chinch bugs can often be avoided by taking good care of your lawn. Don't cut your grass too short: leave it at about four centimeters high. Avoid using too much fertilizer. Chinch bugs are attracted to lawns with excess nitrogen, so don't overdo it. Water your lawn regularly and aerate your lawn in the spring to help make your grass less inviting to chinch bugs.

How do I remove a chinch bug infestation?

Chinch bugs can cause extensive damage if left untreated. Slightly damaged turf will recover rather quickly if lightly fertilized and watered regularly. Heavily infested lawns may have significant plant mortality because of the toxic effect of chinch bug saliva. For a severe infestation of chinch bugs, call Abell Pest Control. We are familiar with the habits of these lawn pests and have the necessary tools to remove an infestation.

 
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