Field Day Scheduled to Promote Western Corn Rootworm Monitoring Program

June 30, 2000
In 1998, University of Illinois Extension entomologists unveiled a monitoring program for adult western corn rootworms (WCR) in soybean fields to predict root injury in rotated corn. The program's preliminary threshold was based on a 3-year participatory on-farm research program conducted in east-central Illinois. A scouting protocol and predictive threshold were described in an insect information sheet ( that was distributed to growers in high- and moderate-risk areas where crop rotation had failed to provide adequate control of western corn rootworm. The monitoring program is in its third year, and data from this program have shown the new strain of western corn rootworm is now present in 26 counties in Illinois. In 1999, adult western corn rootworms were detected for the first time in Christian, Menard, Sangamon, and Shelby counties. Extension entomologists continue to recommend the use of the monitoring program to predict root injury in rotated cornfields and track the spread of the new western corn rootworm strain.

This year, about 25,000 Pherocon AM sticky traps have been distributed free of charge from University of Illinois Extension, Department of Crop Sciences, and the State of Illinois, Department of Agriculture Conservation 2000 Sustainable Agriculture Grant Program. More than 50 counties in Illinois will be involved in the monitoring program this year, and many of this year's participants are monitoring their fields for the first time using Pherocon AM sticky traps. To learn more about this monitoring program, growers are invited to attend a field day on July 7 at Yoder's Country Kitchen in Arthur, Illinois. Susan Ratcliffe and Dan Anderson, Extension specialists, University of Illinois, will present information about the monitoring program, and a limited number of free sticky traps will be available for growers interested in monitoring their fields this year. Contact Bob Harris, Moultrie-Douglas Extension unit, at (217)543-3755 for more information and to make your reservations by July 5. Field days will also be conducted in Petersburg, Illinois, on July 13 and in Bloomington, Illinois, on July 14. Additional information will be provided in the Bulletin next week regarding locations, times, and contact persons for the field days on July 13 and 14.--Susan Ratcliffe

Author: Susan Ratcliffe

The Pest Management and Crop Development Bulletin
Executive Editor: Kevin Steffey, Extension Entomologist

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