Rise Of The Pests

Soybean Aphids

After an almost balmy December for much of the Midwest, a cold snap hit in February. Alas, it was not severe enough by any means to wipe out many pests, believes Christian Krupke, Purdue University. “Overwintering survival of most pest species should be quite good.”

Aphid Fever

Overwintering populations of soybean aphids in parts of the Midwest are large this winter — as indicated by 1) fall captures of winged aphids in suction traps and 2) very large numbers of eggs that entomologists have found on buckthorn, says Kevin Steffey, Extension entomologist with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Krupke was happy to report that Indiana’s soybean aphid numbers during the growing season were very low. “The vast majority of fields we monitored registered zero aphids throughout the season,” he says. But he agrees with Steffey that 2007 should be a different story, as “in the fall we had unprecedented high numbers of aphids going into overwintering sites, particularly in the northern half of the state,” he says. “It may be an early and active aphid year.”

Both experts suggest growers and retailers start watching for aphids in late June and July, after they fly from buckthorn to soybean and begin establishing colonies in soybean fields. “The critical time for scouting is when the soybeans are in the reproductive stages of growth,” Steffey emphasizes.

Coby Long, senior insecticide brand manager with Syngenta, says the soybean aphid has spread from its roots in the upper Midwest around the Great Lakes, and now covers New York to Iowa. “That whole dynamic has really exploded,” he notes.

Corn Feeders

With low numbers, western corn rootworm (WCR) was kind to Indiana fields, though a cold, wet spell in early May caused larger than normal losses in corn planted just before this period. Other pests such as white grubs, seedcorn maggot, and wireworms may have done the deed, says Purdue’s Krupke. “But this kind of damage is unavoidable after such weather conditions. There are no insecticides that will offer protection under extended cool, wet conditions just after planting.”

He doesn’t see enough acreage in Indiana being shifted to corn — perhaps 10% in the coming year — to impact rootworm populations in the  near-term, but in areas such as southern Indiana where the soybean variant isn’t yet present, continuous corn would lead to higher pressure.

In Illinois, however, western corn rootworm and western bean cutworm are among the corn pests to watch for in 2007, says Steffey. “We anticipate that the rootworm larvae will cause injury to corn planted after soybeans anywhere in the state where the soybean variant has been established — basically any county north of the I-70 corridor. Although the focus on rootworms in recent years has been on corn planted after soybeans, corn rootworms will still threaten corn-after-corn, just as they have for decades.”

Still new to the state, western bean cutworm arrived in Illinois in 2004 — but northwestern counties in particular will want to pay close attention, as moths have been found in most traps across the northern half of the state.

Defining The Epicenter

“The epicenter of this cutworm has been eastern Nebraska and western Iowa,” says Hank King, product manager with Dow AgroSciences. “It continues to grow in its geographic scope” and has gone the distance to northeast Kansas and northern Missouri. One reason for the insect’s rise could be the move to more genetically modified crops, says Aaron Locker, product manager with FMC Corp. These modified hybrids are strong against certain pests, but have caused shifts to other problem pests including cutworms, wireworms, and armyworms, he says.

Steffey notes that Japanese beetle numbers were extremely large in southern and central Illinois and in pockets to the north. “Because they overwinter as grubs in the soil, we anticipate their return in 2007,” he says. Some soils may have gotten cold enough (about 20ºF) to kill off some, but snow cover insulated the ground in many areas. “We’ll watch for the adults to emerge from the soil in mid- to late June and keep our eyes peeled for silk clipping in corn and defoliation in soybeans,” he says.

Rust & Company Coming To Dinner?

As Daren Mueller, Extension program specialist with Iowa State, poetically puts it, “each year the table is reset” when it comes to the possibility of Asian soybean rust reaching the Midwest. “There have been some cold snaps moving deep into the South — as far as Tampa, FL, so survival of soybean rust has been lower than in previous winters. Rust did not survive in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, which is a positive for many of the Midwestern soybean growers.

“We got a glimpse of how fast soybean rust can spread during its rapid spread in October 2006, when inoculum built up in Louisiana,” he adds. At that time, weather broke in the South: Temperatures started to cool and more moisture arrived, reports Gary Fellows, technical marketing manager with BASF. “That happened in the September-October time frame, but when rust did come up, it moved very rapidly.”

“Beyond rust, there’s a continuing trend for more sudden death syndrome, frogeye leaf spot, and Cercospora leaf blight in soybean,” says Mueller. In addition, bean pod mottle virus (BPMV, vectored by the bean leaf beetle) was detected in every county in Iowa last year, reports his colleague, Alison Robertson, Extension field crops pathologist with Iowa State. “Depending on the survival of the beetle this winter, we may see a high incidence of BPMV in 2007,” she says.

In the South, both frogeye leaf spot and Cercospera are already very prevalent, and BASF’s Fellows would expect some of those diseases could be worse this year because of the warm early winter.

As more acres move from soybean to corn, many soybean pathogens “will not be happy about the extended rotations away from soybean,” which could lead to lower incidence of soybean diseases, says Mueller. Examples are the two “biggies:” soybean cyst nematode and sudden death syndrome.

Corn Diseases In Waiting

But while soybean diseases may not like a double dose of corn, corn diseases will thrive. “With more growers considering corn following corn, if we have a cool, wet spring, seedling blights — and therefore stand establishment — may be an issue,” believes Alison Robertson, Extension field crops pathologist with Iowa State University. Corn-on-corn fields, especially those with surface residue, will be more prone to seedling diseases thanks to inoculum pressure and cooler, wetter soils, she says.

Also lurking in that residue is inoculum for foliar diseases such as gray leaf spot, anthracnose leaf blight, northern leaf blight, and eyespot. Robertson says scouting will be critical in corn-on-corn fields to make sure fungicides, if being used for management of corn diseases, are applied at the right time. The goal is to protect the ear leaf and leaves above the ear from infection and extensive blight development during grain fill.

Topics:

Leave a Reply

Insecticides Stories

InsecticidesHow To Scout For Corn Earworms In Corn
July 28, 2014
In her weekly report, University of Missouri Agronomy Specialist Jill Scheidt discusses what to look for when scouting for corn earworm. Read More
InsecticidesEPA Grants Besiege Insecticide Additional Approvals
June 18, 2014
EPA has granted additional registration approvals for the use of Syngenta's Besiege insecticide on sorghum, cereal grains and peanuts. Read More
InsecticidesPrevathon Insect Control Approved For Cereal Crops
January 13, 2014
DuPont's Prevathon insect control powered by Rynaxypyr has received U.S. EPA registration for use on cereal crops, including wheat, most other small grains and sorghum. Read More
InsecticidesInsecticides 2014: Insect Pressure, Solutions On The Rise
January 2, 2014
Bt resistance, weather concerns and myriad other issues have led to an increase in both traditional pest pressures as well as new pests. Read More

Trending Articles

CropLife 100Agrium To Cut 500 Jobs, Sell Some Businesses
November 11, 2014
Among the businesses Agrium will try to sell are its micronutrients and European UAN (urea-ammonium nitrate) lines. Read More
HerbicidesMonsanto, Sumitomo Chemical And Valent Extend Crop Protection Collaboration
November 10, 2014
The agreement extends their strategic partnership in Monsanto’s Roundup Ready PLUS Crop Management Solutions platform for soybeans and cotton in the U.S. Read More
FertilizerCorn Rootworm Hybrids And Potassium Uptake
November 4, 2014
To achieve successful yields, grower-customers can’t afford to cut back on their potassium use with corn rootworm hybrids, say experts. Read More
StewardshipResponsibleAg Begins Auditor Training
October 31, 2014
ResponsibleAg auditor training is now underway at the Ford B. West Center for Responsible Agriculture in Owensboro, KY. Read More
InsecticidesNew Research Study Shows The Value Of Neonics
October 29, 2014
The study evaluated seed treatment, soil and foliar uses of neonicotinoid insecticides in the U.S. and Canada. Read More
Crop InputsPlatform Specialty Products To Acquire Arysta LifeScience
October 20, 2014
Once the acquisition is complete, Platform Specialty Products will combine Arysta LifeScience with previously acquired companies Agriphar and Chemtura Crop Solutions. Read More

Latest News

EquipmentAGCO Announces Operator Of The Year Finalists
November 20, 2014
Four custom applicators have been selected by AGCO Application Equipment as finalists for 2014 Operator of the Year, an honor that recognizes them as being among the top professionals in their industry throughout North America. Read More
MicronutrientsH.J. Baker Expands Tiger-Sul Business
November 20, 2014
H.J. Baker has created and filled two strategic positions in business development and sales within its Crop Performance Division. Read More
soybean field
FertilizerGeneral Mills Honors United Suppliers For Nitrogen Opti…
November 19, 2014
United Suppliers winning proposal detailed SUSTAIN, a consulting network that provides customized products and services for farmers using a needs-based system approach. Read More
EmployeesOhio AgriBusiness Association Awards $25,000 In Scholar…
November 19, 2014
Each year, the Ohio AgriBusiness Association Educational Trust scholarship program awards scholarship dollars to students enrolled in an agriculture-related field attending several state colleges. Read More
ManagementServi-Tech Names New CEO
November 17, 2014
Servi-Tech has named Greg Ruehle its new president and CEO. Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Ag Acquires Colorado Aerial Application Outlet
November 17, 2014
Ft. Lupton, CO-based Reck Aviation — a full-service chemical application company providing aerial crop applications of fertilizers and crop protection products — will operate as part of Pinnacle's AgOne Application Services brand. Read More
Eric SfiligojMcDonald’s Message: Biotech Crops Scarier Than Cancer
November 17, 2014
Despite their potential health benefits, one of the world’s largest potato users will pass on a new biotech offering. Read More
MicronutrientsWinField Releases 2014 NutriSolutions Results
November 14, 2014
A number of significant regional and national crop deficiency trends emerged from the 2014 WinField NutriSolutions tissue sampling program. Read More
FertilizerH.J. Baker Opens Chinese Production Lines
November 14, 2014
The occasion was the official launch of the Tiger-Sul sulphur Bentonite production line of two much anticipated fertilizer products in China, T90CR sulphur fertilizer and TZinc micronutrient enhanced sulphur fertilizer. Read More
ManagementOhio Certified Crop Adviser Program Accepting Nominatio…
November 14, 2014
The award recognizes an individual who delivers exceptional customer service for farmer clients in nutrient management, soil and water management, integrated pest management and crop production in Ohio. Read More
HerbicidesSyngenta Announces Acuron Trial Plot Results
November 14, 2014
Acuron was tested at 167 trial locations across 35 states. Trials included 95 Syngenta locations, 54 university locations and 18 distributor locations. Read More
Crop InputsVerdesian Expands Sales Force
November 13, 2014
The new sales representatives will work with growers, retail partners and distributors to oversee technical training and product education. Read More
EquipmentAGCO Raises $100K For Wounded Warrior Project
November 13, 2014
AGCO Corp. partnered with local AGCO dealers across the U.S. and Canada to raise nearly $100,000 in support of wounded service veterans. Read More
HerbicidesDow AgroSciences Announces Launch Of Enlist Duo Herbici…
November 12, 2014
It will be launched in conjunction with a stewarded introduction of Enlist corn, and seed production of Enlist soybeans in 2015. Read More
FertilizerH.J. Baker Expands Tiger-Sul Business
November 12, 2014
Agricultural firm H.J. Baker has created and filled two strategic positions in business development and sales within its Crop Performance Division. Read More
Blenders13 Fertilizer Blenders For 2015
November 12, 2014
Dealers can find a fertilizer blender to deliver any speed, volume and custom mix they want. Read More
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Vice President Receives Honorary FFA Award
November 11, 2014
Jim Loar, vice president of operations of Wilbur-Ellis’ Agribusiness Division, was awarded the Honorary American FFA Degree at the 2014 National FFA Convention and Expo in Louisville, KY. Read More
FertilizerBASF Makes Limus Nitrogen Management Available In U.S.
November 11, 2014
Reducing ammonia losses by more than 90%, Limus nitrogen management has demonstrated increased crop yields on average of 6%, according to 2013 replicated research. Read More