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Black/grey larvae identification.

Hello, we keep finding these black- grey larvae in our garden sandpit. 
Any idea what they are? 
Thanks!

Posts

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,371
    Hello @davidjspalmer_5UMxYdU and welcome to the forum 😊 

    Those look like ‘leatherjackets’ … the larvae of the Cranefly aka Daddy Long Legs. No danger to your children (although I wouldn’t advise eating them) but if they’re also in your lawn they’ll eat the roots of the grass 😧. You can treat the lawn with specific leatherjacket nematodes … now is about the right time of year … which again will be safe for children and pets but will certainly help get rid of the cranefly problem. 
    Hope that helps 😊 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Thank you! I'll look into that treatment. 
    I've not seen a lot of crane flies around, and it's a bit of a puzzle as the sandpit has a cover...
    We recently put a bark area down for the children and I wondered if that was anything to do with it. 
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,371
    The crane flies will have laid their eggs last autumn … the adults are only around for a short while to mate and reproduce and then die. Some of them don’t even eat. Fascinating lifecycle 
    https://insectcop.net/lifespan-life-cycle-of-crane-fly/#:~:text=The entire life cycle of the crane fly,so short-lived that many species don’t%20even%20eat.
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Wow, that is an interesting one. 

    Can't have happened here, as the sand has only been there a couple of weeks. I wonder if the sand itself had the eggs in when I bought it? 
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,223
    They certainly look like leatherjackets. It's possible they were in the sand, although it seems unusual. They may have been in the bark, rather than the sand. 

    If you have an area you can lay them out, the crows/magpies/starlings will take them.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,371
    Leatherjackets sometimes wriggle to the surface of the turf during periods of heavy rain, to avoid drowning … they sometimes appear on patios and paths again those times … perhaps they somehow wriggled into the sandpit? 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







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