Insects and Animals

Woodpecker – Damage to Dead Tree

Q: This is a small dead tree in our back yard. It looks like some kind of animal was trying to make shavings, shreds of tree lying at the base. Any ideas? I have lots of woodpeckers on my farm...

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Frozen Icicle on Tree Limb – Squirrel?

Q: Why is this branch dripping? It’s way up high on the ‘Squirrel Highway’ they use to go from tree to roof. A: My bet is a squirrel stopped for a snack and chewed on the tree limb, which caused...

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Used Gas On Yellow Jacket Holes – Why Are They Now Flying Over Area?

Q: We used gas on three different yellowjacket holes. There are now dozens of yellowjackets flying over this area during the day. Is it possible these insects were not in the nest when it was destroyed and are trying to...

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Deer Ate Japanese Maple Leaves – Will It Survive Winter Inside?

Q: Deer ate all the leaves off of my four-foot-tall Japanese maple. Will it survive if I bring it into our sunroom this winter?  A: I think there’s a good chance your Japanese maple will sprout leaves next year without...

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Lacewing Eggs – Identification

Q: I found these white things on a satsuma leaf. A: Lucky you! You’re seeing the eggs of a lacewing. You’re lucky because lacewing larvae are ferocious predators of sapsucking aphids, scale insects, spider mites and whiteflies. Look around on...

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Fire Ants – No Control With Cucumber Peels, Coffee, Cinnamon, Grits

Q: Do cucumber peels, coffee grounds, cinnamon, or grits control fire ants? A: In a word, no. The grits/fire ant control myth has been around for ages. Folks mistakenly think that fire ants will eat the dry grits, which will...

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Lawn Service Saw Grubs, How Do I Treat?

Q: My lawn care guys told me that they saw grubs in areas where the fescue had died. How should I treat for them?  A: I would first ask for the guys to show you the grubs. White grubs are...

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Finding Scorpions Indoors

Q: Our ranch-style house is built on a slab, primarily one level. In an average year, we may find two or three scorpions indoors. But since the beginning of September we’ve started finding them almost daily, in all parts of...

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Italian Parsley Plant With Black And Green Caterpillars

Q: I found several black and green striped caterpillars on my Italian parsley plant. A: They are swallowtail butterfly caterpillars, sometimes called parsley worms. The butterflies laid their eggs on your plant back in July. Unless you desperately depend on...

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Why Are Cabbage Worms On My Collards?

Q: I know I have cabbage worms on my new collards. Did I plant them too early or too late?  A: Cabbage worms seem to attack cabbage, kale, and broccoli plants anytime you plant them, spring, summer, or fall. I’m...

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Pellets Dropping On Roof From Overhanging Tree – What Is It From?

Q: I think I have an infestation of gypsy moth caterpillars in a large tree whose branches hang high over my covered porch. The dropping pellets sound like it is raining on the roof all day long.  A: You certainly...

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Copperhead Identification Test

I’m often called upon to determine whether a snake is venomous or not. Many times, the question is “Is this a copperhead?” To help you brush up on your herpetological skills, I thought this copperhead identification test might be interesting....

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Gypsy Moths – Not in Georgia

Q: I think I have an infestation of gypsy moth caterpillars in a large tree whose branches hang high over my covered porch. Dropping pellets sound like it is raining all day long on the roof. A: You certainly have...

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Armadillo – Where Found in Georgia

When I received a photo of a newly planted bed of mondo grass that had been plowed up overnight, I immediately thought “armadillo!”. But the damage was done in Dunwoody…not a part of the state where folks have complained about...

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Flower Bed – Armadillo Damage

Q: I planted some dwarf mondo grass 2 months ago. After about 3 weeks I found it completely uprooted. I replanted it and 3 weeks later it happened again. It doesn’t appear that any of the roots or leaves are...

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Butterfly Weed – Seed Pod

Q: This just appeared on my butterfly weed plant. Are these seeds? A: Yes, it’s just the seedpod full of seed. Each seed has a silky tail that will be caught in the wind and thus will be distributed around...

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Insects On Figs – How To Deter Them Without Killing

Q: I have a fig tree that is covered with little juicy nubs where figs used to be. Every time one gets ripe, large black wasps with white marks descend and devour it before I get a chance to pick...

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Owl Nest Box – Will The Owls Scare Away The Bluebirds?

Q: I recently read an article about putting owl nest boxes in the back yard. Will having owls in my yard scare away the bluebirds that regularly nest there? A: I’m guessing the article described building and installing nest boxes...

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