Mole crickets are large crickets, 1 to 1.5 inches long. They cause big problems in warm weather states where they tunnel through lawns and eat the roots of certain grasses and small plants. Their hind legs look similar to other crickets but their front legs are large, muscular and equipped for tunneling through the soil. They mainly affect Bahia grass, and Bermuda grass but are known to eat St. Augustine grass, Centipede grass and Zoysia. While the grass is damaged by this feeding, the majority of the lawn damage is caused by their burrowing.
In the early spring female crickets lay clusters of eggs in the soil about 2 to 12 inches deep. There are usually 25 to 50 eggs in a cluster and each female will produce 4 to 5 of these clusters. The eggs hatch into nymphs in 10 to 40 days. This is precisely when the mole crickets are most vulnerable and it's the best time to apply insecticide.
One application of Imidacloprid .5G Granular Insecticide will give season long control of mole crickets. For a quick kill, an additional application of Bifen XTS will knock out the adult mole crickets. For best results mix 2 teaspoons of Bifen XTS and one ounce of Dyne-Amic Surfactant in one gallon of water and spray at the rate of 1 gallon per 1000 square feet. Immediately water the area with about half an inch of water. The Dyne-Amic Surfactant and the additional water will really help the Bifen XTS penetrate the soil and get to the adult mole crickets. Consult your local Agricultural Extension Service for the best times to apply in your area.