But spraying will continue to keep the pest at bay.
A Japanese beetle infestation in Orem has nearly been eradicated after three years of intense spraying by the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food. The number of beetles captured this season totaled just five, representing a 95 percent reduction in insect numbers from last year.
"We are very pleased that we collected so few beetles this year," said program manager Clint Burfitt. "This gives us hope that we can eradicate this pest."
In order to be sure, the department is continuing its spraying program one more year.
About 100 acres are likely to be sprayed during 2010. The area is bordered by 100 North and 500 North, and by 350 West and 725 West streets.
As in the previous two years, gardening will be permitted with no restrictions.
Japanese beetles pose a threat to Utah's $150 million agriculture and nursery industry, said department spokesman Larry Lewis.
Adults can attack more than 300 species of plants, including trees, ornamental shrubs, vines, fruits, flowers, vegetables, gardens and field crops. Larvae also are serious pests of lawns, other grasses and nursery stock.
About $400,000 from a state insect-eradication fund was spent to kill off the Utah County infestation.