Invasive beetle attacking local gardens - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Invasive beetle attacking local gardens

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -

The Japanese beetle population continues to grow each year in Central Wisconsin. 

A local Biological Sciences professor doesn't believe the bug will be leaving Wausau anytime soon. 

"They are things that are here to stay," said UW Madison professor, Paul Whitaker. "And we'll have to learn to deal with."

The fluorescent green beetle eats away at leaves, leading to plants rotting and crops dying. 

"It is devastating to probably 300 different species of plants," said Whitaker. 

The bug was first spotted in Wausau years ago but residents said they have noticed the increase in population each year since their first spotting. 

There are several ways to try and get rid of the beetles. 

Spraying pesticides or organic insecticides is the quickest, although some gardeners prefer the more natural, time consuming way. 

"A bin with soapy water and knocking them off of my hand," said gardener Paul Kage. "It's the most natural and easy way to control the Japanese Beetle and other pesticides." 

Summer is the peak time for this bug - come winter they are usually underground, in the soil. 

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