Mole Cricket Hatch

By Todd Lowe, senior agronomist, Florida Region
June 6, 2012

Mole crickets have hatched recently throughout Florida and can quickly damage turf if insecticides are not applied in a timely manner.

A recent Turf Advisory Service visit found small mounds of soil on a practice green that resembled ant hills at first glance. On further inspection, the mounds had small tunnels that extended into the turf. A soap flush using one teaspoon of dish washing soap per gallon of water revealed several small mole cricket nymphs of different sizes emerging from the putting green.  

Mole crickets are subterranean insects that tunnel through the soil in search of food. They cause turf damage by severing roots and their tunneling creates tufts of turf on the surface that are scalped by mowers. Tunneling from overwintered adult mole crickets was reported previously this year (see Florida Regional Update - March) but overwintered adults generally cause minor turf damage due to low population numbers. Later in spring, however, adult females dig small underground chambers, about the size of a golf ball, and lay up to 60 eggs within each clutch. Tunnels from emerging nymphs are often observed in bunkers, giving superintendents warning as to when to treat the golf course with the appropriate insecticide. If left untreated, tunneling from recent hatches can become quite severe in areas with large mole cricket populations. 

There are several insecticides labeled for mole cricket control on golf courses (see Universtity of Florida publication #ENY-324) but it is important to apply these products in a timely manner, as mole cricket nymphs can grow and damage turf quickly. Some insecticides are rather short-lived and outbreaks can quickly re-emerge following treatment. These are usually fairly inexpensive options. For a few dollars more there are insecticides available with longer residuals and that are guaranteed by the manufacturer to provide season-long mole cricket control.

  

Source:  Todd Lowe, tlowe@usga.org or 941-828-2625
Partner Links
AmEx image
AmEx image
AmEx image
AmEx image
Chevron
   

The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.


Chevron image
Rolex
   

Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.



Rolex image
IBM
   

IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

AmEx image
Lexus
   

Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

For more information on Lexus, visit http://www.lexus.com/

AmEx image
American Express
   

Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

For more information on American Express visit www.americanexpress.com/entertainment


AmEx image