Chafer Grubs

 

Chafer grub
Chafer Grubs are a pale colour with distinctive legs and are typically about 15-20mm in length.

Chafer Grubs are the larvae of the Chafer Beetle and although not as common as Leather-jackets they cause similar problems by feeding of the roots of the grass.

The adult Chafer lays its eggs in early summer, usually May and June (depending on the weather conditions). They hatch shortly after and will feed on the grass roots until late September to early October. After this period the Chafer Grubs will move deeper into the soil where they will stay during the winter months, finally emerging on the surface as Beetles in the spring time.

The most extensive damage is usually caused in August and September as the grubs are reaching maturity. The damage from Chafer Grubs is seen in the form of thinning, yellow turf in the early stages eventually developing into irregular dead patches on the lawn. The grass can easily be pulled up as the roots have been eaten and damaged.

Further damage is also caused by wildlife such as birds like crows and magpies, as well as foxes and badgers which all feed on Chafer Grubs. These animals can cause extensive damage as they tear up the turf as they search for the grubs.

Prevention of these grubs is very difficult, so be vigilant and keep a look out for birds digging up the lawn looking for grubs (Note: These symptoms can also be birds seeking Leather-jackets). Once the problem has been positively identified the lawn can be treated with a nematode based product available from most good garden centers.