Illinois Outdoors at PrairiestateOutdoors.com
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Jeff Lampe
Jeff Lampe

Jeff Lampe has been outdoor writer at the Journal Star in Peoria for 12 duck seasons. He lives in Elmwood with his wife Monica, sons Henry, Victor and Walter, and Llewellin setter Hawkeye. A native of Buffalo, N.Y., he is an avid fan of the Bills and still has mental scars from four consecutive Super Bowl losses. Outside of hunting and fishing, Lampe's main passion in Illinois was Class A boys basketball (which sadly no longer exists). Former publisher of the Class A Weekly newsletter, Lampe is a co-author of "100 Years of Madness" and "Classical Madness," both books focusing on prep basketball in Illinois.

Illinois Outdoors
 

Scattershooting

A Web log by Jeff Lampe of the Journal Star

Illinois hunting and fishing

May 16: Picture of the Day

May 16, 2010 at 08:40 PM

This is “Wormy,” my youngest son’s new pet.

Not really a worm, but the youngest is just 2 and every wiggling thing we saw today was “Wormy.” And we saw lots of wigglers while grubbing out grass to make larger beds in front of our house.

He didn’t seem to care when I told him this was actually a grub. And he did not want to hold it. Or eat it. “Yick,” he said. Thankfully, there’s time for him to get over that aversion to these nasty little grubs. But I was interested to learn a bit more about these pests, which I assumed were some non-native plague.

Not necessarily says Dr. Albrecht M. Koppenhöfer, Specialist in Turfgrass Entomology at Rutgers University. Click here to learn much, much more. To me it was sufficiently interesting to learn:

“At least 10 species are pests of turfgrasses in North America including native (masked chafers, black turfgrass ataenius, May beetles, green June beetle) and introduced species (Japanese beetle, Oriental beetle, European chafer, Asiatic garden beetle).”

And then…

“Within the groups of masked chafers and May beetles, differentiation is difficult.  The grubs can distinguished by examining the raster (arrangement of spines and hair) and the shape of the anal slit on the underside of the last abdominal segment.”

Well, the latter identifying method created problems. While attempting to examine the anal slit of this rascal, he started wiggling mightily. At first I figured he/she was worried about having been exposed. Not so. As you can notice in the picture, these little grubs must also respond to the call of nature. So I guess we’ll never know the true species of this little white grub.

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