Its Friday the 13th and farmers have much to worry about. But despite the record breaking temperatures and drought, there is some good news. We discuss the lack of soybean aphids throughout most of Iowa. However, there are other insect pests that growers should be scouting, including japanese beetles and spider mites. For more info about insects this summer, see Dr. Hodgson's blog (http://iowabuglife.blogspot.com).
Drought conditions continue for all of Iowa, setting the stage for spider mite outbreaks. Drs. O'Neal and Hodgson discuss the challenges of managing this pest. For more information visit http://iowabuglife.blogspot.com/ for pictures and additional details about spider mites. For more info about managing crops and pests in this drought visit
Although soybean aphid has been a relatively low threat this year, drought conditions have been a perfect storm for spider mites. We encourage people to scout fields now to fully protect yield.
Soybean aphid populations remain low but first generation bean leaf beetles are out i some areas this week. Spider mites are still the primary problem, and we encourage scouting to protect yield.
Most of the state is approaching the seed fill stage (R5), indicating the end of profitable yield returns with an insecticide application. Watch a short video about spider mite management here: http://bit.ly/NdDj6c
“Hanging around, nothing to do but frown, Rainy days and Mondays always get me down.” Karen Carpenter sang about this deadly combination and it’s effect on her emotions. Now, Matt and Erin pile on with a list of insect pests that are active in the state of Iowa. Thankfully, it is not all bad news as we review the biology and pest status of spider mites, soybean aphids and a mix of caterpillar species. We discuss how the weather can help determine if a spider mite outbreak is likely and some tips for dealing with one if it occurs. Matt reveals an upcoming gig in which he will speak at a “Conservation Biological Control Short Course” hosted by the Xerces Society for invertebrate conservation. This all-day event is on 21 August at the ISU Field Extension Education Lab. To learn more visit the website: http://conta.cc/1g9yZqI. Email us your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
Today, Matt and Erin talk about current pest activity in Iowa. Specifically, the last week was very hot (>90 degrees) and that isn't conducive for soybean aphid growth. So no new detection since the last podcast (but not surprised because aphids don't do well under consistently hot temps). Also, some alfalfa farmers are starting to see potato leafhopper injury. Matt heard about early twospotted spider mite injury in Illinois and that is a concern for extended hot and dry periods. Southeastern Iowa is abnormally dry right now and so be looking for initial spider mite infested along edge rows. Mite injury should not be confused with herbicide injury that is also starting to show up in some soybean fields. Finally, Erin and Matt talk about Pollinator Fest displays at Reiman Gardens. Erin will have the kids make Wikki Stik insects and Matt has prepared a honey tasting station.
Potato leafhopper (Photo by Marlin Rice) and classic "hopper burn" (Photo by Purdue Extension). To learn more about potato leafhopper, read this ICM News article.
Twospotted spider mite (Photo by Frank Peairs) and spider mite injury (Photo by Whitney Cranshaw). To learn more about scouting for twospotted spider mite, read this ICM News article.
Wikki Stik insect art for Pollinator Fest (Photo by Erin Hodgson).
Season 12 of the soybean pest podcast starts off with a bang, a hot, dry bang. The midwestern drought is affecting all of us, even the 6-legged.
Check the UNL drought monitor for the current status (hint, its bleak: https://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/CurrentMap/StateDroughtMonitor.aspx?IA)
We talk spider mites, cause its hot and dry.
Erin discusses the remarkable pests outbreaks occurring in alfalfa, exacerbated by a mild winter and hot, dry spring.
Matt turns our attention to Japanese beetles (JB), and the duo speculate about the impact weather has on their abundance. Erin notes a trend of JB larvae in the interior of cropfields, not just the edges. (https://crops.extension.iastate.edu/cropnews/2021/06/japanese-beetle-adu...)
Erin notes the first appearance of soybean gall midges in northeaster Iowa. Matt notes some progress in detecting insecticide resistant aphids.
Rootworms are also discussed as we note egg hatch, signaled with the appearance of lightening bugs.
Finally, Erin takes might to school with reports of the Hackberry emperor. Its a pretty butterfly, definitely not a thistle caterpillar and notorious for being a cheater (https://crops.extension.iastate.edu/blog/erin-hodgson/have-you-seen-chea...)
To wrap up- Erin gives updates on her live events and we note the 26 June is pollinator fest at Reiman gardens (https://www.reimangardens.com/event/pollinator-fest-7/)
Also, did we mention its hot and dry?
Stay tuned for weekly updates now that the field season is in full gear.