Larvae develop in the soil, from where the adultsemerge during November and December. Becauseadults are “hairy”, crafter’s batting wrappedaround the tree trunk will trap and desiccatemany of them. If the batting is sprayed withrepellent chemicals, the kill rate may be enhanced.Insecticides may also be used and should beapplied to the base of the trunk and the crotchesof branches, instead of the canopy where theycould kill benecial insects. Apple weevils breedon weeds such as capeweed, so weed removalhelps reduce their abundance.
Garden weevil (
Considered a less important pest on olive trees,the garden weevil’s habits are similar to those ofapple weevil (see above). Adult garden weevils areabout 7 mm long and greyish brown with a palebut prominent V-shaped stripe on the lower part ofthe bulbous abdomen.Batting does not work as well against this weeviland sticky material applied on a substrate likea plastic band (to avoid ringbarking trees) mayprovide protection.
Rutherglen bug (
Adult Rutherglen bugs are narrow bodied, about3 to 4 mm long and greyish brown with darkmarkings. The nymphs have a dark red swollenabdomen. The adults survive winter and breedin early spring. Large numbers do not usuallydevelop until early summer. Controlling summerand autumn weeds may be helpful in control,since this is where they breed.The damage that Rutherglen bugs cause whenfeeding on olive trees includes twig death andthe development of a scorched appearance onthe leaves. Young trees are most susceptible.Over small areas, canopy spraying with repellentmaterials during invasive ight periods may helpprotect trees.
Olive lace bug (
Olive lace bugs are about 3 mm long (includingthe wings) and mottled dark brown and cream,with black-tipped antennae. They pierce theleaves with their mouthparts. Although most ofthis activity takes place on the undersides ofthe leaves, the most common indications areon the upper surface which becomes mottledwith greenish to yellow-brown dots. With heavyinfestations the yellowing effect may dominate,leading to desiccation and leaf-drop, in turnreducing the vigour and yield of the tree.Eggs are inserted into the tissue on the undersidesof the leaves where they over-winter. In springmonitor the leaves for the emerging nymphs which
Rutherglen bugOlive lace bug adults and nymphs Apple weevil trapped by crafter’s batting