BIGGA & Syngenta in the battle against leatherjackets. Are you too?

By: May 3, 2021

Leatherjackets are one of the most dangerous lawn pests found in the UK. If I remember well, 1999 was the worst year for golf clubs in the UK. To better understand the possible threat in leatherjackets (=the grubs/larvae of the crane fly or ‘Daddy long legs’) a severe leatherjacket attack will mean that your golf turf has to be totally replaced (—>expensive!).

This is not the first time BIGGA has addressed this issue. In 2019 BIGGA held an emergency summit with the aim of finding industry-led solutions to the threat of chafer grubs and leatherjackets in the turf industry.

Damage caused by predators searching for leatherjackets resized

This case is also timely/topical now because there is a high activity of leatherjackets at this time of the year. Actually, the leatherjackets are waking up.

Recently I found the white paper, released on April 15, 2020, by Bionema that explains why should we use biopesticides (e.g. roundworms). I would add birds as a bio solution.

BIGGA & Syngenta major industry event: leatherjackets

This summer will see the return of BIGGA’s popular Continue to Learn Extra webinar series and kicking off the program of learning is a talk with industry expert Glenn Kirby about the high levels of leatherjackets and chafer grubs that have caused tremendous damage to many courses during the early part of 2021.

Glenn Kirby Syngenta leatherjackets

On 13 May BIGGA will be hosting an important industry event when Syngenta Technical Manager Glenn Kirby will explain the reasons behind the damage and why it is important for the golfing industry to unite to support golf club teams during this distressing time.

Alongside the webinar, BIGGA and Syngenta will be distributing a white paper to the golf industry that will provide an in-depth study of the situation including

  • its causes, impact, and potential solutions, and
  • will also be encouraging golf’s leading bodies to share this information with a wide audience.

This Continue to Learn Extra webinar is FREE to attend for anyone involved in golf club our course management. You can register for this vital industry event online now on the BIGGA website.

Widespread damage by leatherjackets at Nizels Golf Club
The ‘Managing the Leatherjacket Challenge’: May – September 2021

The ‘Managing the Leatherjacket Challenge’ webinar kicks off a summer of online learning for BIGGA members, with other webinars being hosted from May until September 2021.

Taking a leading role will be management expert Tyler Bloom, while other topics for discussion will include golf course ecology, Women and Girls’ Golf Week, and representatives of the European Institute for Golf Course Architects discussing ways of making golf courses more appealing to a wider audience.

Head to the BIGGA website for more information.