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No. 01/March 22, 2002

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First Issue of 2002
Planters will be rolling through the fields soon, and when the crops emerge, our work picks up pace. Starting with the next issue of the Bulletin, we will publish weekly issues through mid-August, with a team of Extension specialists and educators writing articles to keep you informed of pest situations and crop development throughout the state. State specialists will provide information based on research trials, observations, and reports from all over the state, as well as from other sources in the Midwest. We'll throw in the occasional editorial, too. Extension educators will offer regional reports, keeping you apprised of more local developments in northern, west-central, east-central, and southern Illinois.

Black Cutworm Adults Already
The first black cutworm adults of the season have been captured in pheromone traps. The moth captures were not "intense," but they're worthy of note.

Mild Winter Brings Out Thoughts of Flea Beetles
Mild winters enhance the survival of flea beetles and increase the potential for the occurrence of Stewart's bacterial wilt. The potential for flea beetle injury and Stewart's wilt in the spring of 2002 is high throughout the southern two thirds of the state.

Find Wireworms Before Planting Corn
Wireworm infestations cannot be controlled with "rescue" treatments after the fact. Consequently, knowledge of the presence (or absence) of wireworms before planting corn is the best way to make plans for their control. Although anticipating the occurrence of most secondary insect pests is challenging, wireworms can be detected before planting.

Ultimately, the only way to know for certain whether wireworms pose a threat is to look for them before planting corn. This article describes the use of solar bait stations to assess the threat of wireworm infestations.

The Watch for Alfalfa Weevils Begins
Alfalfa weevils are the "earliest-rising" insect pests of field crops in Illinois, becoming active whenever the temperatures rise above 48 degrees F. When temperatures exceed 48 degrees F, larvae begin to develop within the eggs and adults resume mating and egg laying.

Scouting for alfalfa weevil larvae should commence when between 250 and 300 degree-days accumulate. According to current degree-day accumulations, alfalfa weevil larval activity is still in our future. However, accumulation of degree-days varies within an area, depending on topography and other factors.

Mustang Insecticide Registered for Use
A new pyrethroid insecticide--Mustang, manufactured by FMC Corporation--received federal registration late last year for use on several field crops, including, but not limited to, alfalfa, corn, sorghum, soybeans, and wheat. This article includes a list of crops, rates of application, and selected insects for which Mustang is labeled for control.

New Herbicides and Label Changes for 2002
This article contains information about label changes for the following products:

Aventis: Option 35WG (foramsulfuron)
BASF: Raptor 1S (imazamox), Backdraft SL 1.35L (imazaquin + glyphosate)
Dow AgroSciences: Hornet 68.5WDG (flumetsulam + clopyralid)
DuPont: Accent Gold WDG 78.1WDG (nicosulfuron + rimsulfuron + clopyralid + flumetsulam)
FMC: Aim 1.9EW (carfentrazone)
Monsanto: Yukon 67.5WG (halosulfuron + dicamba)
Syngenta: Callisto (mesotrione)
Valent: Phoenix 2EC, Valor 51WDG (flumioxazin)

Oats, Anyone?
One unexpected surprise of the 2001 growing season was the price of oats, which was considerably higher than it had been in recent years, especially when compared to prices of other crops with which it competes. This has renewed some interest in the crop in Illinois for 2002.

This article discusses the economics of oat production and information about maximizing yield potential.

Coatings for Corn Seeds
The Landec Company, which owns the Fielders Choice seed company in Indiana, is again promoting polymer coating of corn seed for very early planting. This is a special polymer, with the ability to "sense" temperature and to become permeable to water only when the temperature reaches a certain point.

While we take a neutral view of this technology at this point, pending more research results, we would urge some caution in using coated seed on large acreages.

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

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