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How to Manage Pests

UC Pest Management Guidelines

Sugarbeet wireworm larvae.



Scientific name: Limonius spp. and others

(Reviewed 1/07, updated 1/07)

In this Guideline:


Wireworms are shiny, slender, cylindrical, hard-bodied, wirelike, yellow-to-brown larvae found at all times of the year and in almost any kind of soil; the larval (or wireworm) stage of this beetle may last several years. Adults of these larvae are known as click beetles.


Wireworm larvae injure crops by devouring seeds in the soil, thus preventing seedlings from emerging; by cutting off small, underground stems and roots; and by boring in larger stems and roots.


The presence of wireworm larvae can be monitored by burying carrot pieces partially into the soil at seeding to attract the wireworms.

Common name
(trade name)

  Calculate impact of pesticide on air quality
When choosing a pesticide, consider information relating to impact on natural enemies and honey bees and environmental impact Not all registered pesticides are listed. Always read label of product being used.
  (Admire Pro)
7–10.5 fl oz
  MODE OF ACTION: A neonicotinoid (Group 4A)1 insecticide.
  COMMENTS: A soil application, may also be applied in irrigation water. Apply immediately after transplanting when conditions suggest wireworms could be a problem. Repeat applications of any neonicotinoid insecticide (e.g., acetamiprid–Assail; imidacloprid–Admire, Provado; thiamethoxam–Platinum) can lead to resistance to all neonicotinoids. Alternate neonicotinoids with an insecticide that has a different mode of action to help delay the development of resistance.
** See label for dilution rates.
+ Restricted entry interval (R.E.I.) is the number of hours (unless otherwise noted) from treatment until the treated area can be safely entered without protective clothing. Preharvest interval (P.H.I.) is the number of days from treatment until harvest can take place. In some cases the R.E.I. exceeds the P.H.I. The longer of these two intervals is the minimum time that must elapse before harvest may take place.
1 Modes of action are important in preventing the development of resistance to pesticides. Rotate chemicals with a different mode-of-action Group number, and do not use products with the same mode-of-action Group number more than twice per season. For example, the organophosphates have a Group number of 1B; chemicals with a 1B Group number should be alternated with chemicals that have a Group number other than 1B. Mode of action is assigned by IRAC (Insecticide Resistance Action Committee). For additional information, see their Web site at http://www.irac-online.org/.



[UC Peer Reviewed]

UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines: Tomato
UC ANR Publication 3470
Insects and Mites
F. G. Zalom, Entomology, UC Davis
J. T. Trumble, Entomology, UC Riverside
C. F. Fouche, UC Cooperative Extension, San Joaquin County
C. G. Summers, Entomology, UC Davis/Kearney Agricultural Center, Parlier
Acknowledgments for contributions to the insects and mites section:
N. C. Toscano, Entomology, UC Riverside

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