Watch for Western Bean Cutworm: The Insect Overwinters

Categories: PLANNING, CORN

 Corn earworm, black cutworm and Western bean cutworm (damage pictured above), are 3 broad lepidopteran insects that are most overlooked in a Minnesota season. They “might” be a problem because corn earworms and black cutworms migrate from the southern U.S. states and don’t always reach a treatment threshold.  


But because Western bean cutworm overwinters in the Minnesota soil, this pest may be a developing threat to a corn crop. When considering whether planting an insect-traited hybrid is a worthwhile investment, take into account the amount of pest pressure experienced this season. If Western bean cutworm were present this season, unfortunately it’s likely they’ll cause problems next season. In such cases, planting a traited hybrid would likely be a valuable investment.
To determine the yield difference between a conventional hybrid and one with the Agrisure Viptera® trait, the Stanton Agronomy in Action site conducts annual plot trials. Trait stacks with Agrisure Viptera control up to 16 above- and below-ground insects, including Western bean cutworm, black cutworm and earworm. Stanton trials revealed there was as much as a 22 bu/A yield difference between the conventional hybrid and Agrisure Viptera traited hybrid, while the average increase was 5-6 bu/A. Reducing insect-caused ear damage that can lead to mold and mycotoxins also leads to higher-quality grain and peace of mind.
If Western bean cutworm affected 5% or more of your crop this season, planting a traited hybrid in 2018 is recommended because the insect will likely overwinter and cause more problems next season. To learn more about hybrids available with Agrisure Viptera trait stacks, speak with your Golden Harvest Seed Advisor.
Photos are either the property of Syngenta or used under agreement.
Syngenta hereby disclaims liability for third-party websites.


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