Insects and Animals

Fan Sound – Cicada Call

Q: This week I heard a sound coming from the woods that sounds like a fan running with a bearing that needs oil. It is loud enough that you can hear it from several hundred yards. Any ideas? A: I’m...

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Fern Caterpillar Prevention

Q: I have Boston ferns on my front porch every summer. In the middle of the summer I get fern caterpillars. Do you have any suggestions to prevent them? A: These caterpillars come from eggs laid on the fern by...

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Woody Adelgid Attack – Prevention

Q: My wife and I recently purchased seven acres in Union County. We’ve planted several hemlocks. How do I prevent wooly adelgid attack?   A: Wooly adelgid, a sap-sucking insect, has killed thousands of hemlocks in north Georgia so I can...

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Compost Bugs – If you build it, they will come

Q: I have three big compost piles but the only thing I see in there are pill bugs. Where do I get insects for my piles? A: My rule for getting bugs into compost is “Build It and They Will...

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Squash – Pickleworm

Q: Last year my yellow squash grew fine but they had little green worms inside when you cut the squash open. A: My guess is that you had pickleworms in the squash. They are the larvae of a brownish-yellow moth....

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Removing Pinebeetles – No Diesel Fuel

Q: I was told by a tree removal company owner that diesel fuel poured around the base of a pine tree will be absorbed by the tree and kill the beetles. I am skeptical. Is this true? A: You’re right...

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Bamboo – Used for Trellises and Stakes

Q: Some of our gardeners at Alpharetta Community Garden want to go out and cut bamboo for trellises and stakes. Will the bamboo will root in the ground if they do this? A: No, the freshly cut bamboo stems won’t...

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Bee-keeping – Painting of Hive

Q: I am a first-time bee keeper. I received several used supers and was told to clean them up and repaint them. I painted the inside by mistake. Will this harm the bees? A: UGA bee expert Keith Delaplane says...

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Bird Feeding – Seasons

Q: We have been feeding the birds black oil sunflower seeds all winter. Should we continue this when spring arrives or do we need to cut back to encourage them to eat berries, etc? A: Garden coach Daryl Pulis (www.mrsgreenthumb.com)...

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Pet Waste – Composting

Q: I discovered a product that composts pet waste. I have always felt badly about throwing away cat litter. It is safe to compost pet feces? A: It’s not safe to put pet waste in bins from which you’ll remove...

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Squirrel – Damaging Hose and Gas Can

Q: We have one of those plastic resin hose reels at our outside spigot. The hose stays rolled up on the reel most of the year. Recently we discovered a big hole near the nozzle end of the hose (the...

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Corn – Damage by Crows

Q: I’m not just frustrated about my corn,  now I’m getting mad about it.  I’ve always tried to plant on Good Friday.  But I didn’t this year because I was in Florida at the time. I planted the following Saturday. ...

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Flea Beetle – Control

Q: What could cause all these holes in my eggplant leaves? A: It’s flea beetle damage. They attack radish and mustard leaves too, but eggplant seems to be their favorite food in my garden. You can use organic controls like...

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Copperhead Snake – Identification

Q: Can you help us identify this snake that showed up in our driveway? What should we do next? A: Snake expert Jim Rodgers at Nearly Native Nursery says: “These are some of the best pix of a snake I...

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Beech Tree Borer – Identification

Q: I have never seen this type of frass from a borer’s entrance hole. They have hit every beech on my property that is over 5″ caliper. They make a vertical slit in the trunk, close to an inch in...

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Northern Water Snake – Identification

Q: We live next to a creek in Decatur. My son loves to explore the creek but we have found that there is a snake in residence. Can you help me identify it? A: I’m no snake expert but Jim...

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Periodical Cicada – 2011

Periodical cicada hatched by the millions in 2011. UGA’s Nancy Hinkle mapped the emergence of this insect in Georgia. She received e-mails from over 500 people and had cicadas reported from 50 counties.  In general, these cicadas seem to do...

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Kudzu Bug – On Wisteria

The kudzu bug, Megacopta cribraria, has quickly become a nuisance in Georgia. While it seems to lightly damage kudzu, the creatures wander into homes by the dozens (if not hundreds) in fall and spring. Now they have been caught damaging...

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