Nolo Bait™ FAQ
Here is everything you ever wanted to know about Nolo Bait™, the best organic insecticide for grasshoppers. Information is taken from the manufacturer’s website, with some of our own tips added. As always, we are here to answer any questions for you, however, these are some of the most commonly asked questions about this product.
Where Can I Purchase Nolo Bait™ Locally?
Nolo Bait can be purchased from Shell’s Feed & Garden Supply as a pre-order here.
What is Nolo Bait™?
Nolo Bait™ is an EPA registered biological control for grasshoppers, including Mormon crickets. Nolo Bait™ contains naturally occurring Nosema locustae spores. These spores are uniformly applied to flaky wheat bran at a rate of at least 1 billion spores per pound of bran. The bran is consumed by the grasshoppers and they become infected with the spores. Young grasshoppers that consume the bait will die more quickly than older stages. As Nosema locustae builds up in the gut of heavily infected grasshoppers the insects become lethargic and reduce their feeding. Infected grasshoppers are seen by healthy grasshoppers as additional food sources and are cannibalized. This natural behavior further spreads Nosema locustae throughout the grasshopper population. Additionally, infected females can pass the spores through the egg-laying process. The progression and persistence of this organism provides long-term benefit to the landowner without environmental damage.
How Fast Does Nolo Bait™ Work?
Killing grasshoppers quickly does not always offer the greatest benefit when using Nolo Bait™. The youngest grasshoppers will die most quickly, usually within 3 weeks of eating it. Buildup and transfer of infection will continue in larger immature hoppers that don’t die as quickly. Heavily infected grasshoppers will become slow, lethargic and reduce their feeding as spore builds up inside them. Nolo Bait™ is a long-term suppression product. Infection will reduce the feeding and reproductive capabilities of the grasshoppers. In turn, these grasshoppers are often cannibalized by healthy ‘hoppers that have migrated in and Nosema locustae spores continue to spread through the population. Successive use each season will result in fewer healthy eggs being laid and fewer eggs surviving to hatch in the spring.
Is Nolo Bait™ Safe To Use In My Organic Garden and Around My Home?
Yes! Nolo Bait™ is safe for use around humans, pets, birds and wildlife; it won’t contaminate environmentally sensitive areas. Extensively tested and EPA approved, Nolo Bait™ won’t harm beneficial insects, is NOP compliant and is widely approved for organic use. Nolo Bait™ is a registered trademark.
Will Nolo Bait™ Hurt My Pets?
No! The active disease organism in Nolo Bait™ is host specific to grasshoppers, some crickets, and Mormon crickets. Mormon crickets are actually a species of grasshopper. Any other non-target insect, bird, mammal or reptile that ingests the bait or eats an infected grasshopper will not be harmed. The organism will pass through their digestive system without activating.
What Happens If The Nolo Bait™ Gets Wet?
Water does not harm the Nosema locustae spores but the wheat bran becomes soggy and less attractive to the grasshoppers. Avoid putting out the bait if rain is forecast.
How Do I Apply Nolo Bait™?
We recommend placing Nolo Bait™ in bait stations. Bait stations can be made from anything that will protect the bait from rain and sun, such as short 6″ pieces of straight pipe at least 2″ – 4″ diameter – they are easy to fill, place in the garden, and find when you want to refill them, plus grasshoppers seem to be attracted to the color white. The bait however, is so tasty to grasshoppers you can use old coffee cans, tin cans, etc. The pipe or container protects the bait from sunlight and rain, which keeps it fresh and attractive to the grasshoppers longer. If you see a large area of activity, place several bait stations in that area.
While the manufacturer recommends broadcasting, we at Shell’s Feed feel that broadcasting this “tasty treat” for grasshoppers (no, really, the bran is VERY appealing to them!!) would in fact attract more grasshoppers to the areas where they would not have been previously, which could cause wider damage until they are controlled by this Nolo Bait™ process described above. Now, if an entire area is completely infested in grasshoppers, you might use bait stations AND broadcasting to help control them in that area.
Where Should I Apply Nolo Bait™?
Apply Nolo Bait™ in bait stations (see above question for how to make them easily) where you see them congregating, such as in gardens, flowerbeds, or anywhere tall plants are growing. This will help you to avoid drawing additional grasshoppers into the area while allowing those already present to feed on it. Bait stations can be placed in the shade of the plants on the ground. Keeping these bait stations available will entice grasshoppers to fill up on bait rather than plant material.
When Should I Apply Nolo Bait™?
Morning is best as grasshoppers will do most of their feeding in the morning but late afternoon is good too. Though you may see them around, grasshoppers don’t feed as heavily during the heat of the day. Avoid applying Nolo Bait™ when rain is forecast within the next 4-6 hours or if heavy dew is still present on the grass.
How Much Nolo Bait™ Should I Put Out And How Often?
Nolo Bait™ can be applied as often as every few days to once a week and targeted in areas of heaviest grasshopper infestation. Consumption of a higher number of spores per grasshopper will increase efficacy and decrease the amount of time required to kill the grasshoppers. Therefore, where faster population reduction is required, this may be achieved through multiple applications or a higher application rate in order to increase the amount of bait available to each grasshopper.
How Can I Tell If Nolo Bait™ Is Working?
In the very young, grasshoppers death may occur within 1-3 weeks. Once grasshoppers reach the third instar stage of growth they have developed enough body mass to allow more spore infection. When populations are not extreme, visual symptoms of an infection are more easily seen. When densities are heavy, infected grasshoppers are easily camouflaged by mass numbers of moving bodies. Sick and infected grasshoppers will stay low or on the ground under plants and hidden from sight, or are quickly consumed by other grasshoppers and predators. Heavily infected ‘hoppers will be slower to hop and may fall over upon landing. Often they are reluctant to hop at all. Their eyes become cloudy instead of dark brown and the abdomens of sick hoppers will become whiter as well. Dead, partially cannibalized grasshoppers may be found clinging to plant stalks. New hatchlings that ingested the bait die more quickly and are rarely seen as they are readily consumed by other grasshoppers, insects, birds and reptiles. Due to the nature of this product (i.e. microsporidial pathogen), efficacy may be affected by such factors as weather, grasshopper population densities and insect migration.
How Should I Store Nolo Bait™, If Needed?
Optimal storage is 42 degrees F in a dry location. We are committed to providing you with the highest quality ingredients in our grasshopper bait, freshly formulated upon order. Our spore is regularly tested to guarantee its viability. This insures that our product will remain 100% active in cool, dry storage conditions for up to 13 weeks from the date of formulation.