Subject: Please help identify this insect
Location: Vancouver BC Canada
February 6, 2013 7:34 pm
This insect arrived last summer out of nowhere and still remains even in winter. There are thousands of them on my plants. They hop pretty far for such a tiny insect all of 4mm long. Touch the wrong plant or walk through our arbor and will have hundreds of these on your face, in your hair, clothes, their nasty.
All of my Contoneaster have died but no other plants are even slightest bit stressed? And there on every plant, even a small Cedar hedge.
I’ll post picks, their brown, very tiny, they walk pretty quick and hop if you try to touch one.
If anyone could guide me in the direction or know what this insect is called I would appreciate it very much, thank you…
Signature: Thank you very much, Jim.
This looks like a benign Globular Springtail.
Daniel, thank you so much for this. You nailed it, now after some searching of a couple university extension sites, I am able to control this pesty little fella without spraying. I don’t need to eradicate, just lower the population level. Will definitely donate to help keep this site going!
Hello again Jim,
That was very kind of you. We wrote a quick response to you last night, but we generally do postings in the morning and we planned a more thorough response that addressed the Cotoneaster. We suspect that there might be a relationship between the appearance of the Springtails and the demise of the plants, though the Springtails are not responsible for the plants dying. The conditions that resulted in the death of the plants might be related to the soil, or the dead plants might be providing organic material to support the robust population of Springtails. They are beneficial insects that help break down organic matter into humus, but they can become a nuisance when conditions support a population explosion.
Daniel, thanks again. We had an unusual 3 month hot drought, even though I watered, I think it may have been the main cause for the Cotoneaster to die. But…I am only guessing at this point.