Here we are, still in the month of March, and the first black cutworm adults of the season have been captured in pheromone traps. Ron Hines, senior research specialist at the Dixon Springs Agricultural Center, activated his pheromone traps in Pope and Massac counties on March 15. He found black cutworm males in the traps in both locations on March 18. The moth captures were not "intense" (nine or more moths captured over a 1- to 2-day period), but they're worthy of note.|
Profile of a black cutworm adult--note the black "dagger" marking next to the kidney-shaped marking.
Pheromone trap for black cutworms.
As you are aware, we can predict the first signs of cutting of corn seedlings when 300 heat units have accumulated (base 50°F) after an intense capture. When reports of such captures begin to occur, we'll include our predictions in the Bulletin.
By now, readers of the Bulletin are familiar with the reports that Ron Hines provides. Ron sets up traps to monitor the flights of many species of moths at various times throughout the season: armyworm, black cutworm, corn earworm, European corn borer, fall armyworm, and southwestern corn borer. This information is valuable for anyone who wants to keep abreast of the potential occurrence of these important pests. Therefore, we intend to make Ron's trap-capture reports available through the Bulletin Web site this year. As soon as we get his Web pages up and running, "The Hines Report" will become a weekly feature. (We'll provide the URL when it's available.) Anyone wishing to follow the population dynamics of these pests in southern Illinois will want to access "The Hines Report" regularly.--Kevin Steffey