No. 6 Article 2/May 14, 2010

Low Numbers of Soybean Aphids Found on Overwintering Host This Spring

On May 6 and 7, David Voegtlin, emeritus professional scientist with the Illinois Natural History Survey, examined common buckthorn plants (Rhamnus cathartica) in several locations in Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan. At each sampling site, he observed soybean aphid colonies. As expected based on the fungal epizootic that swept through the fall migrants last year, the colonies this spring were very small. The most commonly observed colonies were in northeastern Indiana, near Rome City. Dave found some winged aphids and noted that approximately half of the colonies had alatoid nymphs (with wing pads present). He said he did not observe any soybean fields with emerging plants.

So it would appear that soybean aphids are off to a slow start in 2010. However, due to their tremendous reproductive capabilities, we have a long way to go this season before we know the full extent of the challenges this insect pest may create for soybean producers. I extend my thanks to Dave for sharing his observations.--Mike Gray

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