University of Illinois

No. 4/April 17, 1998

Intense Flights of Black Cutworms Surge Through Central and Southern Illinois

Numerous cooperators have reported intense flights (nine or more moths caught during a 1- to 2-day period) throughout some counties of central and southern Illinois. Ron Hines, senior research specialist at the Dixon Springs Agricultural Center, reported that intense flights of black cutworm moths occurred in Massac and Pope counties on April 8 and 9. Jeff Staley, whomonitors traps near Ridgway in Gallatin County, also reported very impressive flights of moths on April 9 (21 moths caught on one trap), April 10 (23 and 15 moths caught, two traps), and April 13 (10 moths caught on one trap). Intense captures of moths also were observed by cooperators in Effingham County on April 12.

n central Illinois, the migratory surge of black cutworm moths also has been noticed by cooperators. Dennis Copp, with LincolnLand FS located in Auburn, Sangamon County, found 10 moths in his trap the morning of April 9. Jeff Hoffman reported the capture of 15 moths in his trap the morning of Easter Sunday (April 12) just south of Bement, Piatt County.

Although intense flights in northern Illinois have not been reported, moth captures have been common. Jim Morrison, crop systems educator, Freeport Extension Center, noted that moths were caught in a trap 2 miles north of Freeport on April 6 and 7.

In next week's Bulletin, we will offer a table that gives our predictions regarding potential cutting dates this spring. To the cooperators who have reported moth captures we offer our sincere thanks! The moth captures that have been reported indicate that cornfields in the susceptible stage for economic injury (1- to 4-leaf stage) should be scouted very carefully this spring. Please keep your observations from the field pouring in.

Mike Gray (, Extension Entomology, (217)333-6652