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Locusts control and bees


#1

Does anyone have any suggestions on what to use to control locusts that doesn’t severely impact bees?

I don’t have plague proportions but have more than I can kill by hand (and I’ve been killing them by hand for a fair few months - from what I can see they actually learn so I’ve had to modify my manual approach to improve the outcomes in my favour…). They’ve gone from just eating fruiting trees and vines to also eating eucalypts and other native Australian plants that are typically on the very unpleasant to toxic side of friendly for many pests without any appreciable impact.

Ideally I’m not looking for something to spray but instead a type of bait that can be strategically placed.


#2

Plant more trees and shrubs to bring the birds in. They’ll sort those hoppers out. :wink:
We don’t have locust issues here, loquat issues yes, the birds eat 'em…
Repellents seem to be the recommendation. I’m sure I’ve seen a dried out grasshopper after applying Dipel but I havnt seen anything on the interweb saying it is effective on them.
Or chooks. :wink:


#3

Thanks for that suggestion (and it’s great to hear it works on grasshoppers). I’ve recently put out a single small test pot of dipel mixed with wheat bran. I had read that the dipel won’t kill the adults but it impedes the moulting of the juveniles, so I’m guessing I won’t see any success there for a while. I’m just not sure of the concentration of dipel required for locusts. I’m going to guess that since they are vacuous eating machines it needs to be alot more than for grasshoppers but I’ve really got no clue.

I had thought about the chooks, but given I’m in suburbia I don’t think the neighbours would appreciate it…


#4

You are fighting a loosing battle with locusts, they will eat anything that is green. They breed like there is no tomorrow and I have seen them strip mature fruit trees of their leaves. Skeggly has suggested chooks and your neighbors might appreciate them when they are loosing their gardens, but all that will stop them is a cold snap. The only thing i can suggest is talk to local farmers, they will be affected as well and if there is an answer they will know of it.


#5

Get several and start a neighborhood tournament :sweat_smile:


#6

OK, so of course I am going to suggest something to spray… :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Neem oil is a natural plant extract which makes the plants unpalatable to chewing insects. As long as you don’t spray open flowers, it is harmless for bees. We mix 2.5ml of pure Neem oil with 2.5ml washing up (dish) detergent in 1 litre of lukewarm water, and spray in the evening when most bees have stopped flying. We don’t use it for locusts, but it works really well on caterpillars and citrus leaf miners too.

Here is a scientific reference, if you are interested.
https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/j.1439-0418.1993.tb01186.x

One other thing. I would not use it on human-edible leaves (lettuce, cabbage, spinach etc). It has a pretty strong smell (sort of oniony), and while it is not toxic, it will probably spoil the taste. :blush:


#7

Thanks. I hadn’t thought of Neem for locusts. I do use that for citrus leaf miner but that’s the tree they decimate (tangelo). Perhaps I need to use it more often…