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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone else doing anything to protect fruit trees and seedlings from swarm X?

I'm behind schedule. I had hoped to have netting on all my fruit trees by now. I'm just starting. They say the swarm will emerge in the next few weeks.

Mike
 

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I think maybe dormant oil spray will work. aren't the bugs incapable of eating when they emerge, i thought they only ate in the larval stage / i might be wrong after all 17 yrs since the last cycle of the buggersfor spot treatment possible could use a insectacidle soap? again i am not sure.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
James,

The damage is done when the females slit the twigs and small branches to lay eggs.

Whatever the swarm was 3 years ago, the damage they did to things was considerable. I only had a few fruit trees then. Now I have 47. I covered my fruit trees then and it really helped. Big damage to twigs and small branches on our maple (and other) trees.... the fruit trees and blueberry bushes were unscathed. the only problem I'm facing is a lot more trees and now the first ones planted are larger.

Dormant oil won't make much difference. I'm expecting massive infestation with all the woods around us.

Mike
 

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how many trees you have will dictate the choices

You can apply a repellent chemical with a decent life span now using a hand pump garden sprayer. Talstar is a commercial product, Home Defense (from home dippy) is similar, and they will last the whole growing season. These products are very repellent and the bug is likely to leave before it can lay eggs or damage the trees.

The hand sprayer is ok if you a only a few trees. If you have lots of trees, the only reasonable way to apply the pesticide is with a power sprayer with a large tank.
 

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I hear everyone talk about cicadas showing up on a 17 year cycle, but down here on the Texas Gulf Coast, we have them every year. Some years are more than others, but I can not remember never hearing cicadas during the summer or seeing the empty shells.
Are we just different down here?

John
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Gobug, thanks for the tip on Talstar. I think that will be a lot easier than netting. Do you have personal experience with it? TIA

traumapirate, you will see/hear some pretty much every year. There are different swarms though and some are larger than others.

Mike
 

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I hate those things. Locusts is what we call them. (locally) I remember a few years ago when we had a decent hatch here in southern ohio. Those things started driving me nuts, with that constant noise they make. I thought i would lose my mind. Chickens and ducks love to eat them. Heck there are people round here that like to eat them as well. I dunno bout that though. I would have to be real, real hungry. To each his own

Be good
Jagger
 

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Mike,
I have used Talstar. Its a good product. Most landscape sprayers that I know use it to spray trees. It used to come in a wettable powder (my preference), now its a thick liquid - colloidal suspension I think. Wettable powders are more active.

traumapirate,
There are two kinds of locusts here in the US. One stays underground for 12 years, and the other stays underground for 17 years. When they emerge, they only live a few weeks. Their cycle is not related to the underground time. Some emerge every year. Conditions this year will determine the hatch in 12 and 17. I'm not sure why this is supposed to be a big year.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I can't use Talstar and I'm not sure I would recommend it to anyone that is concerned about their environment. Highly toxic for honeybees and is highly toxic to aquatic life (As in fish) if the runoff gets into your water (pond, lake, etc).

http://extoxnet.orst.edu/pips/bifenthr.htm

An excellent resource if you are looking at using various pesticides is:

http://npic.orst.edu which is the National Pesticide Information Center.

Mike
 

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Got my recipe ready, I'm gonna try a few. My friend said don't think of them as insects, they are tree shrimp. I like that idea. :haha:
Bluecreek Rog
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Bluecreek Rog, feel free to come up here and you can have all the tree shrimp you want.

I just bought 20 yards of 72" wide nylon netting (I think they use it in wedding and prom dresses for lining) at 99 cents a yard. I'll start on the smaller trees first and then move on to the larger ones.

Mike
 

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Free range potbellied pigs. They have nearly eradicated the japanese beetles, my guess is the cicada grubs are just as capable of being recycled into pork.
 

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If you spray your flowers you are correct. I'm guessing you were concerned about fruit trees that have already set fruit. So the exposure to the bees is mainly drift. Drift is always a concern with any product, so you choose the time carefully. You need to control that with any product. Birds bees and fish are sensitive to everything. I'm concerned about the environment and I recommended it. The product is very dilute when mixed and the total amount you would apply would be very small. People metabolize it and it does NOT persist in the environment. I looked at one of the sites you posted, but didn't know which section you visited. Its a massive sight.

Tree shrimp sounds pretty good. I know cats like them, and they can be picky eaters.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Gobug, I spoke with the folks at the National Pesticide Information Center (they have an 800 number) and they said that the active ingredient in Talstar (BIFENTHRIN) is toxic to bees...period. It should not be used in proximity to an apiary and should not be used where bees forage. I pointed out that all the fruit trees were about done blooming. They said it doesn't matter. It's not a drift issue. It has a half life of 7 days to 8 months depending on conditions.

The toxicity information for BIFENTHRIN is located at: http://extoxnet.orst.edu/pips/bifenthr.htm

Mike
 

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Mike,

Error on the side of the angels.

Although I suggested Talstar, its attributes, a long residual/half life, make it a bad choice after all. Normally, I don't recommend that people spray anything, especially something with a long residual. Most pest problems can be resolved without long-life pesticide applications.

At first thought it seemed to be a good idea to keep the cicadas from devouring your trees. On second thought, the netting may be your only good choice.

My business has to do with structures, not plants. So, I spoke out of school. Although I have used the product, I don't use it in the garden. I'm thankful you did the research.
 
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