The common name is Chinch Bug.
The Scientific name is Blissus sp.
The layman’s term is “OH NO!”.
Chinch bugs love Florida grasses because they love a hot environment. Chinch bug population peaks between the months of May – October but they can and do survive year round in Southwest Florida. They love warm climates.
Most people don’t know they have chinch bugs until it’s too late. You’ll know you have them by that dreadful patch of yellowed dying grass. Chinch bugs stay in groups and will attack a small area at one time. This is why you will notice a small patch or span of grass that is damaged but not the entire yard.
Most people haven’t even seen a chinch bug before. They are a small black bug only 1/8 – 1/6″ long with whitesh colored wings. To find out if you have chinch bugs bend down and pat the grass or scrape your shoe along the surface of the yard. This will disturb them and make them visable. Sometimes you can even smell a foul odor after you have finished mowing your grass.
There no one reason that chinch bugs attack although some think over fertilization might be a culprit.
There’s no specific type of Southwest Florida grass they attack over another although some argue that thy like Floratam the best. They plaque floratam, bermuda, zoysia, bahia and centipede grasses alike.
Your only course of action is to call a local licensed and insured pest control company to have your lawn professionally treated. One good dose is good. Your homework is to keep an eye out for future attacks by using the methods above. There is no evidence that spraying on a regular basis will prevent an attack and may even make chinch bugs more resistant to the chemicals the lawn companies use.