Corn borer could be bigger problem in 2016

corn borer

An extension pest management specialist says corn growers could see higher populations of corn borer this year.

Bruce Potter with the University of Minnesota tells Brownfield Bt corn has been very effective in suppressing the insect, but tighter margins have forced some farmers to plant more non-traited corn.

“We’ve got bigger areas now that don’t have Bt (corn), so I think (borer pressure) is something people should watch for and not get caught unaware from a pest that we’ve been able to ignore for awhile.”

Potter says his research station in southwest Minnesota is tracking increased moth flights.

“We’re not quite warm enough to hit the peak yet, but there are definitely moths flying and the first eggs being laid.  We can predict that flight based on Degree Days looking at the 50 degree base, just like corn.  But we’re starting those Degree Days all the way back in January for the overwintering larva.”

Potter recommends scouting the largest corn plants for egg masses on the bottom of leaves.

He says the economic threshold is an average of one borer per plant.








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