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Question about earwig control

Posted by terri76 (My Page) on
Thu, Jul 30, 09 at 22:12

When you spray earwigs with antibacterial soap, do you mix it with water? What formula do you use? Also what soap do you find most effective?

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RE: Question about earwig control

Insecticidal soap has minimal (no) effect on earwigs. It is registered for use on soft bodied insects like aphids, soft scale, mealy bugs and various larvae - the soap coats the insect bodies and smothers them. Since earwigs don't function biologically in the same manner, this approach really doesn't work :-) Formulations that contain pyrethrins or spinosad have much greater effect because of the addition of those products but require the earwigs to consume the treated plants. Plain insecticidal soap is a contact control only.

Be careful using home remedies. Often they can cause phytotoxic reactions with the plants. If making your own insecticidal soap, use a non-antibacterial, non-detergent based liquid soap like Dr. Bonners. You need only a tsp of soap to a gallon of water. Some folks add a few drops of cooking oil (canola, olive) to the solution to help it adhere to the foliage.

Search out some botanical insecticides registered for earwigs - rotenone, pyrethrins, spinosad - or use diatomaceous earth or traps. IME, traps tend to be the most effective way of controlling these pests.

A key element of an earwig management program is trapping. Scatter numerous traps throughout the yard. Traps can easily be hidden near shrubbery and ground cover plantings, or against fences. A low-sided can, such as a cat food or tuna fish can, with 1/2-inch of oil in the bottom makes an excellent trap. Fish oil (e.g., tuna fish oil) is very attractive to earwigs or vegetable oil with a drop of bacon grease can be used. Dump captured earwigs and refill cans with oil. Other common types of traps are a rolled-up newspaper, corrugated cardboard, bamboo tube, or short piece of hose. Place these traps on the soil near plants just before dark and shake accumulated earwigs out into a pail of soapy water in the morning. Continue these procedures every day until you are no longer catching earwigs.

RE: Question about earwig control

Sluggo Plus is labeled for use for earwigs. It is pet and wildlife safe slug bait.

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