No. 6 Article 3/May 4, 2007

Alfalfa Weevil Update

We have heard from several sources that alfalfa weevils seem to have survived the freezing temperatures in early April rather well. Kevin Black, insecticide/fungicide technical specialist with Growmark, observed that although freezing temperatures killed alfalfa leaves and stems, the alfalfa weevil larvae seem to have dropped to the ground and survived in the crowns or among the residue. Ron Hines, seed agronomist for Growmark's southern region, has received reports that alfalfa weevil larvae feeding in crowns have prevented regrowth, a situation we usually don't observe until after the first cutting. Lisa Coorts, Maxi-Yield Consultant Service, has observed alfalfa fields with threshold or near-threshold densities of alfalfa weevil larvae and levels of injury in Macoupin County.

Alfalfa growers should take time right now to examine alfalfa fields for evidence of alfalfa weevil larvae and injury, even if the freezing temperatures did a number on the plants. Reports suggest that alfalfa weevil injury is widespread.--Kevin Steffey

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