NELT Wireworm Traps

Friday, May 6, 2016

The Noronha Elaterid Light Trap (NELT).
In an attempt to manage the wireworm problem, a new device has been invented by Dr. Christine Noronha, an Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada entomologist.  The NELT (Noronha Elaterid Light Trap) trap is composed of a solar-powered garden lamp, a small cage, and a white plastic cup. The cup is filled with a few centimetres of water with a few drops of dish soap.  The white cup is buried in the soil so that the lip is level with the ground, and the light shines into it. The light attracts the click beetles (both male and female) that emerge from the ground in May and June.  The beetles fall into the cup and drown.  Last year in one field, Dr. Noronha caught 3,000 females in ten of her traps.  Each female beetle can lay 100-200 eggs, so every death counts!
Note proximity of light to cup.
The traps can be left in the ground from mid-to-late May to mid-to-late June, with the cup/water being changed periodically. The traps have shown tremendous promise in trials, and are set to undergo more testing to determine the recommended field spacing. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is in the process of trademarking the trap name and design, and is now looking for a manufacturer to mass produce the trap. The goal is to have the traps avaialble to farmers in the spring of 2017.

Similar solar power lights can be found fairly inexpensively at your local garden store.
This post was written in part by Jessica MacDonald, Perennia's 2015-2016 summer student.