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Issue No. 3/April 9, 2004

Another Year to Remember for Insect Management?
The Insect Management and Insecticide Evaluation Program team has ambitious plans for applied field research this season. Some projects will assess the efficacy of various products on specific pests; others will investigate the effects of certain insects on crop growth and development; still more will study the effects of crop production practices on pests. Information from readers in the field is always desired.

Some 11th-Hour Reminders About Insect Management
Insect management considerations that integrate concern for the economic bottom line with concern for the environment are presented.

Alfalfa Weevil or Clover Leaf Weevil?
The alfalfa weevil and clover leaf weevil can both be found in early spring and are easily misidentified. Distinguishing characteristics and feeding habits are detailed, and accumulated and projected degree days from January 1 are listed for five Illinois locations.

The Arrival of Black Cutworm Moths Continues
Additional reports of black cutworm moths in Illinois traps are coming in. Degree-days can be an effective tool to help determine when to start scouting for black cutworm larvae.

Announcements on New Insecticides
Force 3G corn soil insecticide has been added to the products to be available for use in AMVAC's SmartBox closed handling system. The pyrethroid gamma cyhalothrin is expected to soon be registered for Illinois use on a number of field, vegetable, tree, and vine crops under the name Proaxis.

Early-Season Diseases of Alfalfa, the "Queen of Forages"
The diseases that can significantly damage Illinois alfalfa stands early in the season are noted, with information on conditions and regions that favor development, symptoms of injury, and management tactics. Careful monitoring and scouting are important to maximizing yield, quality, and profit.

Everything's Coming Up Green (and Purple)
Early-season weeds that plague Illinois fields are described.

The Season Gets Under Way
Planting decisions always entail weighing the factors that influence crop yields and harvest dates. The risks and potential advantages of planting corn and soybean at various dates in Illinois are outlined. Wheat is generally in good shape in the state.

Regional Reports
Reports are provided this issue for northern and west-central Illinois.