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Lexington, KY 40546

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Number 1275
WATCH FOR -Second Generation European Corn Borer Active CORN -Update on Southern Corn Rust and Other Diseases -Corn Rootworm Beetles Active SOYBEAN -Soybean Rust Update

July 6, 2011
LANDSCAPE -European Paper Wasp in Kentucky -Grass Carrying Wasps Leave Puzzling Clues -Euonymus Scale Obvious but Tough to Control INSECT TRAP COUNTS

WATCH FOR Second Generation European Corn Borer Active By Ric Bessin The second generation of the European corn borer is active across the state, some sweet corn and peppers producers should be managing their crops accordingly. Generally with sweet peppers, growers while initiate corn borer sprays at this time as the insecticides need to be in place before egg hatch.

Florida. The increased acreage of corn in the lower Mississippi Valley increases the risk to Kentucky by creating a more effective pathway for the fungus as it spreads northward during the growing season. The extended rains this spring delayed planting extensively throughout Kentucky corn production areas. Delayed planting increases the risk of damage from southern corn rust. Late-planted fields are at greater risk because, should the fungus be blown into the field, late planted fields are at a comparatively earlier stage of crop development. Younger crops therefore have more developmental time to be damaged than early planted crops. While the late planting creates a greater risk of southern corn rust this year, this disease is progressing very slowly in the South (Figure 1). Very dry weather has helped to slow down the spread of southern rust substantially. At this time, for the Continental US, southern corn rust is only reported in one county in the Florida Panhandle. This is such a limited distribution that I wonder whether we'll see any significant pressure from southern rust in Kentucky this year. So what this means is that growers should monitor the progress of southern rust this year. There is a very real possibility that we won't see any

CORN Update on Southern Corn Rust and Other Diseases By Paul Vincelli Southern corn rust has become more of a concern for corn production in the US in the last few years. The cultivation of corn over vastly greater acreage in both Mexico and the lower Mississippi Valley has increased this potential threat in Kentucky. This is because the southern corn rust fungus overwinters in corn fields in Mexico and southern

significant threat in Kentucky. You can monitor the progress of southern rust at the following website: _rust. Reports and field inspections thus far indicate minimal levels of gray leaf spot and northern leaf blight.

Figure 2. Western corn rootworm male beetle on a corn leaf.

Fortunately for Kentucky, rootworms, for the most part, have been a problem restricted to continuous corn, and it often takes 3 or more years in corn to develop a problem. The only exception has been in a few southwestern counties where southern corn rootworm has attacked first year corn, but these are rare instances.
Figure 1. Known distribution of southern corn rust as of Independence Day, 2011.

Corn Rootworm Beetles Active By Ric Bessin Western corn rootworm adult beetles have begun emerging from the ground and can be observed on corn plants. Over the next four to five weeks, growers should monitor their corn for adult rootworm activity in order to determine the need for rootworm management next year. With much of the corn in the state delayed due to late planting, there may be some the possibility of pollination interference in fields that come into silking with large populations of rootworm beetles present.

Growers that may consider planting corn after corn should monitor those fields this summer for corn rootworm adults. We recommend looking at groups of 20 consecutive plants for the presence of the beetles, with an average of more than one beetle per plant being of economic concern for next year. If a field was found to have more than one beetle per plant, then next year the produce should do one of the following: Rotate the field to a non-corn crop Use a soil insecticide for corn rootworm at planting Use a Bt corn hybrid that protects against corn rootworms Use the highest rate of an insecticide seed treatment that protects the roots for rootworm feeding There are no rescue treatments for corn rootworm, so once the symptoms of rootworm feeding become apparent, there are no effective treatments.

numbers of beetles are observed during the early stages of pollination, growers may need to treat and reduce beetle numbers. As Japanese beetles are also present, this is the time to also monitor for this pest and the silk clipping threat it poses as well.

Figure 3. Leaf feeding damage in corn by western corn rootworm beetles.

Corn rootworm beetles will feed on leaves in the absence of corn pollen and corn silks. Mid and upper leaves may have portions of the upper leaf surface removed by beetle feeding. I think that this gives the plant a frosted appearance. While this is not of economic concern, it is one of the easily recognized signs of large numbers of rootworm beetles present.
Figure 5. Japanese beetles clipping corn silks to the point where pollination cannot occur.

Fortunately, we have not observed the soybean variant of the western corn rootworm in Kentucky. This variant moves to soybeans fields to lay eggs, the result being that rootworm damage can occur in first year corn fields. Last year in 10 counties along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, county agents surveyed for corn rootworms in soybeans fields as an indication of the soybean variant in Kentucky. The results of these surveys indicated that there was no sign suggesting that the variant has yet made it to Kentucky.

Figure 4. Corn rootworm beetles clipping off corn silks, interfering with corn pollination.

SOYBEAN Soybean Rust Update By Don Hershman Freezing temperature at critical times in early 2011, plus very dry conditions across much of the lower South this spring, have greatly reduced soybean rust (SBR) activity so far this season (Figure 6). At this time, SBR has only been detected at very low levels in kudzu in three

If large numbers of rootworm beetles are present at the onset of silking and pollen shed, they have the ability to interfere with pollination of corn. The beetles are attracted to corn silks and large numbers can clip off the silks such that pollination does not happen. Generally, 4 or more beetles per developing ear are needed for this to occur. While silks will continue to grow for an extended period of time on ears that do not pollinate, pollen availability may become an issue. Where large

Florida counties; the disease has yet to be found in soybean. It is too early to say that SBR will, yet again, cause little to no damage to soybean in Kentucky and elsewhere in the United States. However, the odds are very good that by the end of the season this possibility will be a reality.

Kentucky for several years without being noticed, thanks to its general lack of aggressive behavior.

Figure 7. Typical paper wasp (photo by Johnny N. Dell,

Figure 6. Current distribution of soybean rust as observed on the soybean rust public website,

Figure 8. European paper wasp (photo by Gary Alpert, Harvard University,

LANDSCAPE European Paper Wasp in Kentucky By Lee Townsend The wasp that started its open-faced nest in a protected portion of our deck this spring wasnt the familiar orange brown insect that normally shows up. This one had the black body and yellow markings of a yellowjacket. Checking a captured specimen confirmed that it was Polistes dominula, the European paper wasp (EPW). Long hind legs and bright yellow antennae distinguish it from yellowjackets. First noticed in the US in Boston about 30 years ago, this wasp has spread to the south and west, being reported from Ohio and Pennsylvania in the early 1990s and Michigan and Maryland in the mid 1990s. This EPW may have been in

Here are some brief factoids about this insect: The EPW rapidly colonizes an area and often out competes native paper wasp species. Cooperation among females and re-use of nesting sites from year to year frequently leads to high densities in some areas. A European study that provided nesting sites resulted in 18 colonies being founded during the first year and 136 in the second year. The resemblance of the EPW to yellowjackets may protect it from predators more effectively that other paper wasps. It also may be associated with a reduced defensive response when people approach a nest. Our native paper wasps feed almost exclusively on caterpillars while the EPW feeds on a wider range of insects. Re-use of paper nests from year to year and high productivity allows for faster buildup of populations than native paper wasps.

EPW tends to select protected sites for its nests which may reduce their vulnerability to predators but does increase the potential for unexpected encounters with people who can more easily see the more exposed native nests.

Grass Carrying Wasps Leave Puzzling Clues By Lee Townsend Several species of solitary wasps nest in natural voids or crevices that they line with clipped blades of grass, thus the name grass carrying wasps. Tracks of Figure 9. Cache of paralyzed longhorned seldomgrasshoppers and grass in a sliding door opened frame (photo by K. Lyons). sliding glass doors and window screens can serve as artificial nesting sites. These hunting wasps capture certain species of grasshoppers or crickets, sting them, and carry them back to the nest. There, the paralyzed insects Figure 10. Wasp (photo by Lee Townsend). become food for the grub-like larvae of the wasp. There may be two generations of the wasps during a summer. The wasp passes the winter in the nest in a brown pupal case and emerges as an adult in early summer.
Figure 11. Brown pupal case of the wasp (photo by K. Lyons).

Curiosity is aroused when accumulations of grass, along with insect parts, are found during fall cleaning or when seldom used doors or windows are opened. Grass-carrying wasps are seldom noticed even though they fly around carrying insects or grass blades. While these slender-waisted wasps can sting, they do not defend their nests strongly. There is no need for control measures other than cleaning.

Euonymus Scale Obvious Tough to Control By Lee Townsend Euonymus scale is one of the most distinctive armored scales in the landscape. It attacks Euonymus, Pachysandra, and Bittersweet; Figure 12. Euonymus scale -femalesdark, pear-shaped; males-white, long hundreds may and narrow. be encrusted on foliage. Impacts can include reduced photosynthesis, stunted plants, premature leaf drop, and death of parts or all of a plant. Often the samples that are sent for identification are so heavily infested that the prospects for control are not encouraging. A good first step is to prune and destroy as many heavily infested branches as possible. Chemical control of armored scales must be directed at the crawler stage, late May and again in late July for this species. Thorough spray coverage is needed for best results, it may take two or more growing seasons to have a visible impact limited

infestations on new foliage. More information is available in tpdf/ef428.pdf .

INSECT TRAP COUNTS June 24 July 1 Location Black cutworm Armyworm Corn earworm European corn borer Southwestern corn borer Fall armyworm Princeton, KY 3 119 13 0 0 1 Lexington, KY 4 568 8 0 0 0

Graphs of insect trap counts for the 2011 season are available on the IPM web site at View trap counts for Fulton County, Kentucky at

Note: Trade names are used to simplify the information presented in this newsletter. No endorsement by the Cooperative Extension Service is intended, nor is criticism implied of similar products that are not named.