The Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) is hosting an open house on Tuesday, April 12, from 5 to 7 p.m. to share information about its plans to eradicate the invasive Japanese beetle (Popillia japonica).
The open house will be held at the Grandview Library, 500 W. Main St. Grandview, WA 98930. Parking for the event is on the south side of the library, entering from West Second Street. Grandview residents are encouraged to attend to learn about the eradication, and give consent to get their property treated free of charge.
WSDA will have English and Spanish-speaking representatives at the event to answer questions or take consent forms.
WSDA detected more than 24,000 beetles in the Grandview area in 2021. Initial eradication plans include using an insecticide to treat the properties in and around the infested area, including private property. WSDA will seek permission from each property owner in the designated area with letters arriving in mailboxes soon.
WSDA proposes to eradicate the pest by treating the properties in and around the infestation area. WSDA is in the process of selecting a potential contractor to apply the insecticide to properties. Speakers at the open house will detail more information on the proposed treatment plan.
Acelepryn, the product named in the proposed treatment plan, is a low-risk insecticide that is not hazardous to humans or domestic animals. This product is sprayed to plant foliage or directly to the soil. The product can also be used in a granular form, applied to the soil by seed spreader.
“Other Japanese beetle eradication projects across the Northwest have shown that a single application to the soil with the pesticide Acelepryn in late April or early May would be the best option,” Camilo Acosta, WSDA eradication project coordinator said. “There may be highly infested areas that will need a second application sprayed directly on the foliage of the plants.”
Agencies in Oregon, Idaho, California, and Utah have used this product for Japanese beetle eradication projects since 2009 and, in some cases, successfully and safely eradicated the pest.
In addition to the eradication project, WSDA is also proposing to amend the quarantine for Japanese beetle by creating a 49-square mile quarantine area centered on Grandview. WSDA designed the proposed quarantine amendment to prevent the spread of Japanese beetle from infested sites within Yakima and Benton counties. The proposed quarantine would regulate certain items and impose restrictions on their movement out of the quarantine area. Updates on this rulemaking process are at agr.wa.gov.
WSDA will again set traps in Grandview and surrounding areas, checking for Japanese beetles. We will increase our trapping efforts, hanging 2,500 traps in the area and again inviting community members to hang traps and report their findings.
Visit agr.wa.gov/beetles for updates and more information on this invasive pest.