Attack of the Crane Fly Larvae

My assurance – this is not a new horror movie, but an equally dramatic reality show happening in my front lawn. Cast of characters include the aggravating title pest, a crew of voracious moles, and starlings each fended off with an arsenal of scissor traps, buckets, rakes, insecticide and eventually grass seed as evidenced in the photos. I heartily refer readers to OSU’s publication EM9296 on the European Crane Fly if your lawn looks anything like mine does.

For those who know me, I’m a bit obsessive about my lawn. I was a little slow on the draw with the insecticide application last winter not getting it applied until late November. The first indication of an attack were a lot of birds foraging in the front lawn, followed by a growing number of bare patches and then the aggravating appearance of mole hills. (I’m personally convinced the moles are dining on the larvae.) Each a classic indication of a real.Crane Fly.Larvae.PROBLEM. G-A-H-H-H-A.

Having accrued over 24″ of rain here during January & February, I waited until last week to set 4 mole traps not wanting to dig holes in the mud. As of this writing – no casualties (dang). Of course family is coming next week and the battlefield is directly out their room windows giving them a dismal view of my landscape.

Reseeding the destroyed area is delayed as I would like to win this battle (no hopes of ever winning the war) by trapping the little beggar(s) first. Also, it is still too cold. The poor little grass seeds would just shiver and freeze to death before they could germinate.  At least the soil is being aerated….

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