Jumping larvae in cocoa bean shell mulch

Asked July 19, 2019, 5:40 PM EDT

Hi. I bought Hull Farms cocoa bean shell mulch at Menard's and some of it eventually developed little white jumping maggots. After much search online, I decided they are either cheese skippers or Euxesta notata, Picture-winged flies in the (Ulidiidae grouphttps://web.extension.illinois.edu/askextension/thisQuestion.cfm?ThreadID=23830&catID=32&AskSiteID=34 . A lot of other people seem to have had these larvae appear in their cocoa bean shell mulch as well. Do you know anything about them? Are they a danger to my plants?

Pennington County South Dakota

1 Response

Neither of those appear to be any sort of quarantined insect, so I'm not too concerned about them being in the mulch. Both require some level of moisture, so making sure not to overwater will help reduce their numbers. They are also not defoliating plant pests, so once the mulch dries out you won't see much of them.