Billbug Larva

Billbug Larva are tiny white worms about the size of a large grain of rice and resemble small legless White Grubs. They are capable of causing serious damage to all the grasses grown in our area.

The adult Billbug, which is a black weevil with a long curved snout, walks through the turf and deposits tiny eggs inside the stems of grass plants. After hatching, a larva tunnels down the stem and exits the plant below the soil surface. The insect continues feeding on the roots as it increases in size. Finally, the larva ceases feeding, enters the pupation phase, and eventually emerges as a female adult (there are no males). The cycle starts over again with possibly two generations per year.

Although the adult may cause some damage to the turf, most of the destruction results from the larvae. These pests are controlled by most of the same specialized products that control White Grubs. Currently, one properly timed application provides season-long protection, if the lawn is adequately watered on a regular basis. Preventive applications are recommended because the larvae are much more difficult to control once they are full-grown.