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No. 12/June 14, 2002

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Mark Your Calendars Now for the 2002 University of Illinois Agronomy Day--August 22
On August 22, 2002, the 46th Annual Agronomy Day will be held at the Crop Sciences Research and Education Center (South Farm), beginning at 7:00 a.m. The theme for this year's program is Agriculture Is Changing: Let Us Show You Where It's Going.

This program serves as an annual showcase for faculty to discuss their latest research findings with clientele throughout Illinois and also from neighboring states.

Black Cutworm Damage Is Economic in Some Central Illinois Counties
During the latter half of the week of May 3, we received numerous reports of significant levels of damage caused by black cutworm larvae. All of the reports we received came from a band of counties in south-central, central, and east-central Illinois.

Although reports of severe damage by black cutworms are not widespread beyond the aforementioned band of counties, farmers throughout Illinois should inspect cornfields for signs of cutworm injury. Rapid growth of corn will allow many fields to escape severe cutworm damage. However, black cutworm larvae can eat several small corn seedlings, and timely scouting is the only way to detect the problem before it's too late.

"Clouds" of European Corn Borer Moths in the West-Southwest Crop Reporting District
Duane Frederking and Matt Montgomery reported encountering "clouds" of European corn borer moths in grassy areas around cornfields in Cass, Menard, Morgan, and Sangamon counties. Duane's windshield apparently "got plastered" with corn borer moths during a recent drive home at night.

Although we have not received reports about European corn borers from elsewhere in the state, we urge people throughout the state to start looking, especially in early-planted fields.

Update on Corn Rootworm Hatch
John Obermeyer, from Purdue University, found a second-instar corn rootworm larva on June 4. Based on this observation, they believe that hatch began on May 31 for larvae found at the latitude of Tippecanoe County, Indiana. While troubleshooting fields because of crop injury, don't be surprised to find small corn rootworm larvae.

Stink Bug Damage Reported in Some Cornfields
Duane Frederking, an agronomist with Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc., reported that several cornfields near Beardstown, Cass County, were infested with stink bugs. Infestation levels ranged from 5% to 10% of plants affected.

This article includes a description of the insect, its life cycle, and symptoms.

Armyworms Here and There
Thank goodness armyworms did not reach the outbreak proportions we experienced in Illinois last year. Farmers have had enough to worry about this spring. Nevertheless, we have received a handful of reports of armyworm injury in corn, primarily in corn planted no-till into rye, alfalfa, or alfalfa/grass mixtures. The reports have come from fields scattered across southern, central, and northern Illinois.

Insects Interfering with Weed Control
Over the past few years, we have received reports from some farmers who have experienced poor control of giant ragweed after application of a translocated herbicide. In many instances, the weeds that were not killed were infested with a stalk-boring insect that had disrupted the translocation of the herbicide. Although the species of the insect involved was not verified in all fields, stalk borers were responsible for this in at least some of the fields.

Preharvest Herbicides for Wheat
With the wheat crop nearing maturity in southern portions of Illinois, some producers may consider applying a preharvest herbicide treatment to control weeds that could make harvesting operations difficult. Clarity, glyphosate, and some formulations of 2,4-D are labeled for preharvest applications in wheat. This article discusses the use of these herbicides.

Regional Reports
Extension Center educators, Unit educators, and Unit assistants in northern, west-central, east-central, and southern Illinois prepare regional reports to provide more localized insight into pest situations and crop conditions in Illinois. The reports will keep you up to date on situations in field and forage crops as they develop throughout the season.

This week's issue includes reports from northern and west-central Illinois.

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

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