June 23, 2016

NYS IPM  Weekly Field Crops Pest Report, June 23, 2016

Volume 15  Number 8

View from the Field

Many Extension Educator are reporting true armyworm (Pseudaletia unipuncta) damage in field corn this week. In most of the cases corn was planted into a rye cover crop. When moths migrate on storms from the south and will lay eggs on grasses like rye. When the rye is killed the armyworms switch to the corn. Mike Stanyard (CCE Northwest Dairy and Field Crops Team) reported a full 20 acres pf corn were destroyed by armyworm this week and larvae were only about an inch. Dale Dewing (CCE Delaware County) and Mike Hunter (CCE Northern NY) also reports a few corn fields over threshold and others approaching threshold.  It is important to get out and look for armyworm this week. For more information see article below on armyworm.

Jeff Miller (CCE Oneida County) and Mike Stanyard (CCE Northwest Dairy and Field Crops Team) both report very low levels of potato leafhopper. While there are low populations, potato leafhopper can really thrive and explode in population with very dry and hot weather. Make sure to get out and scout for this insect pest in your alfalfa.  Jeff Miller (CCE Oneida County) reports some strip rust on small grains.

Ken Wise (NYS IPM) reports  horn fly and face fly populations are on the increase, posing issues for dairy, beef and other animals on pasture. These fly species breed in fresh manure pats left on the pasture by cattle. Non-biting face flies can be observed on the animal face, as females seek fluids from around animal eyes and nose.


Face Flies on Cattle

Face Flies on Cattle

Fly activity aggravates animals and the flies can potentially carry diseases such as pink-eye. Male face flies are not usually on the animals but typically rest on nearby fence posts, trees, etc. waiting for the females to breed. By contrast, horn flies are blood feeders and both male and female flies can be found on the animal sides and backs.


Horn Flies on Cattle

Horn Flies on Cattle

When cows come off pasture they may carry either or both of these pasture flies with them. Both face and horn flies tend to leave their host when animals enter a darkened situation such as a barn. For dairy cattle, walk through pasture fly traps such as the CowVac and the passive Bruce-style trap take advantage of the natural tendency for these pasture flies to leave cows entering a darkened space.




Bruce Trap

As cows come off pasture for milking they are trained to pass through the walkthrough trap. The CowVac system literally vacuums horn flies as they leave the animals walking through the trap. The flies are sucked into a collection bag removing them from the animals and from contributing to population development. The Bruce-style walk through trap works by passively capturing flies as cattle move through the trap. Flies leaving the host are captured in screened side panels that act like minnow traps.

Weather Outlook – June 23, 2016

Jessica Spaccio

NOAA Northeast Regional Climate Center, Cornell University

Last week temperatures ranged from normal to 4 degrees above normal for most of the state. Precipitation ranged from less than ¼” to 1”, with isolated areas getting over 1”. Base 50 growing degree-days ranged from 70 to 150.

Sunny skies, warm temperatures, little rain…

Today there is a slight chance of showers with cooler temperatures in the mid 60’s to upper 70’s. Overnight lows will be in the mid 40’s to mid 50’s.

Friday fog is possible in the morning then clearing to sunny skies with highs in the mid 70’s to mid 80’s. Lows will be in the 50’s to low 60’s.

Saturday temperatures will be in the upper 70’s to upper 80’s. Overnight temperatures will be in the upper 50’s and 60’s.

Sunday’s highs will be in the 80’s to low 90’s. Overnight temperatures will be in the upper 50’s and 60’s.

Monday temperatures will be in the 80’s to low 90’s with some scattered showers possible. Lows will be in the upper 50’s and 60’s.

Tuesday a cold front will bring cooler temperatures in the 70’s and lower 80’s and the possibility of scattered showers and thunderstorms.  Lows will be in the 50’s.

Wednesday temperatures will be in 70’s and lower 80’s. Lows will be in the 50’s.

The five-day precipitation amounts will range from 1/10” to ½”.

The 8-14 day outlook (June 30 – July 6) shows an increased chance for above normal temperatures. The precipitation outlook shows increased chances for above normal precipitation for the eastern half of the state.

The Drought Monitor: Abnormally dry conditions have persisted and expanded due to declining streamflows (locally below the 10th percentile) and a lack of rain over the past 90 days (less than half of normal).  In fact, many of the Northeast’s D1 areas are now running rainfall deficits in excess of 6 inches over the past 6 months.

Maps of 8-14 day outlooks

National Weather Service watch/warnings map

US Drought Monitor

CLIMOD2 (NRCC data interface)


True Armyworm Alert!

Keith Waldron, NYS IPM

True Armyworm infestations have been reported this week in eastern and western NY, as mentioned in the View from the Field. GET OUT AND LOOK NOW!

It is important to detect armyworm areas early, while larvae are still small, since large larvae do most of the feeding and quickly destroy whole stands of corn, grasses and small grains. Because armyworm feeds at night look for chewed leaves, cut stems, lodged plants, pellet-like frass on the ground, and larvae hidden under plant canopy and surface residue. You will need to be aware that armyworms can move from field to field every quickly. If there are sufficient numbers and damage is present, an insecticide could be justified. Larger armyworm larvae, greater than 1 inch long, are much more difficult to control. These large larvae are more tolerant of insecticides, reducing the effectiveness and economic viability of this option. REMEMBER… if you have an infestation in a mixed stand true armyworm, alfalfa and the grass ALL NEED to be on the LABEL!!!


True armyworm larvae appear smooth cylindrical pale green too brownish when they are still small. Mature larvae are smooth and marked with two orange, white-bordered strips on each side. True armyworm ranges in size from 1/8 inch to 1 .5 inches long.

Economic Threshold Guidelines For True Armyworm

Corn – For seedling stage corn Penn State recommends For whorl-stagecorn, apply an insecticide only if most plants show damage and about three larvae per plant are found.

Wheat – 3 to 5 or more larvae square foot, larvae less than 1.25 inches and not parasitized, watch for flag leaf reduction or if grain heads clipped off – yield losses, a spray before soft dough to save the remaining 3 upper leaves is generally beneficial since these tissues are still important to grain filling

Grasses – no specific guidelines available, need for treatment based on the level of damage observed in relation to the expected value of grass harvest.

Identification Resources:

Armyworm as a pest of Field Corn: http://ento.psu.edu/extension/factsheets/armyworm

Armyworm on Wheat: http://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/ENT-36

Common (True) Armyworm:


Fall Armyworm:




Avipel Seed Bird Repellent Bird Study Update:

Michael Morales-CCE Delaware County

CCE of Delaware is currently conducting a crow/bird damage study on corn on 5 farms throughout the county.  Two bags of Dairyland seed was supplied per farm.  This included one bag of untreated control seed and another bag that was treated with Avipel repellent.

Population counts have already been conducted at each plot right around V3 Stage and another will be conducted between late V4 and V5 stage.  The corners of each plot have been GPS’d and laid over a GIS map to show where the treated and untreated seed is.  Any plant pulling and bird damage has been documented with photos.

Thus far, our observations are showing that the birds (mainly crows) have preferred pulling seedling corn in the farmer’s corn variety, but there has been some feeding on the untreated seed.  The Avipel treated corn seed has shown very little to no bird damage.  Plant populations taken from our most damaged field are as follows:

29,700 plants in the treated seed, 27,000 plants in the untreated seed, and 25,700 plants in the farmer’s seed.

Population counts will be continued next week as the rest of the plots reach V5 stage.  At the end of the study yield data will be collected for the untreated, treated, and farmer corn plants.

It has also been noted that both the Dairyland treated and untreated seed has produced much better looking corn as opposed to the producer’s variety.

Crow Damage

Crow Damage

Crow Damage

Crow Damage

Storing grain? Not too early to think about protection from post-harvest insect pests

Keith Waldron, NYS IPM

Planning to store wheat on the farm? Are your grain bins ready? Wheat harvest is still a while off but it is not too early to begin thinking about gearing up for the big event. To maintain the profits a good yield can bring, make and follow a plan to protect your grain while it is in storage. Remember: Grain storage will not improve grain quality. However, proper management of grain during storage will protect the quality present at harvest.

The IPM approach for stored grain protection includes a combination of sanitation, well-sealed bins, frequent monitoring for temperature and insect populations, aeration to cool grain in the fall, and pest management treatments as needed. Stored grain management begins with “an ounce of prevention”. This article will highlight some steps one can take now to protect stored grain before it is harvested. The following pre-harvest information was “gleaned” whole or in part from Stored Grain IPM information from Oklahoma State University Stored Products Research & Education Center and Purdue University. Website source URL’s are provided at end of this article.

Insect infestations are the more common stored grain pest issues one might encounter. Insect infested grain can be docked at time of sale. Most common grain bin insect problems can be traced back to infestations in previously stored material, cracked grain and grain fines and trash. Don’t add new grain into storage bins that have not been cleaned and may harbor a collection of stored grain pests. The key to prevention is SANITATION – clean out the bin every time it is emptied. How clean? If you can tell what was stored in the bin the last time it was used, it needs more cleaning. In addition to insects, birds and rodents are also attracted to left over and spilled grain. Lights mounted on or in close proximity to grain bins may attract unwanted stored grain insects.

Who might the likely insect pests be? A variety of beetles, weevils and moths are common to stored grain infestations. Saw-toothed grain beetles, flat grain beetle, red flour beetles, granary weevils, Indian meal moths and Angoumois grain moths to name a few. A picture is worth a thousand words and the following extension factsheets provide information to help identify the insects you may find as you clean out your storage bins: Principal Stored Grain Insect Pests of Indiana, Stored Wheat Insects identification key (http://bru.gmprc.ksu.edu/proj/sga/key.asp) and Stored grain pests identification (http://storedgrain.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Stored-grain-pests_NorthSouthWest_Pocketguide.pdf).

To prepare for grain harvest and storage the following sanitation practices are recommended.

* Clean harvest and transportation machines before harvest.

* Repair all grain handling equipment before harvest and keep it in good condition.

* Seal unloading auger, auger tube opening, and side door openings before harvest

* Empty storage structures of old grain. The new crop should never be stored on top of old grain.

* Remove and destroy any grain from beneath, around or near the bin area. Sweep and vacuum the floors, false floors, and walls inside empty bins to remove old grain and debris. This debris usually contains insect eggs, larvae, pupae, and/or adults, all ready to infest the new grain. A shop vacuum, broom and scoop are very useful in a cleanup job, and all collected material should be discarded properly.

* Check fan boxes for possible grain pests.

* Remove any spilled grain outside the storage structure.

* Mow / remove weeds at least 10 feet around the bins.

* Check and clean or replace rodent traps / bait stations. Be sure to follow all label directions.

* Check the integrity of screens and porcupine wires to limit bird entry and roosting.

* Insecticides? For additional protection against infestation, the inside and outside surfaces, foundations and floor of a storage facility can be sprayed with residual insecticide, four to six weeks prior to harvest, to kill any insects that were not removed during cleaning and those that migrate into the bin. Use appropriately registered insecticides. Be sure to follow all label directions. Rotate choice of insecticide chemical families to minimize risk of developing insecticide resistance.

* Establish a written sanitation schedule. Keep appropriate records.

Bin Sealing

Roof leaks commonly lead to columns of spoiled grain. Check for these leaks by looking for light coming into the bin. Moisture coming into the bin through the seal between the bin and concrete will cause spoilage around the perimeter of the bin at the base. Check the seal since sealants do deteriorate. Water will run away from the seal at the base of the bin wall if the concrete is sloped away from the bin. Also check the seals around the doors and hatches.

Besides keeping grain dry, grain storages should be well sealed for two other basic reasons: (1) to minimize grain insect entry problems into base and sidewall grain, and
(2) to minimize leakage should fumigants be used.

In addition, improved insect kill (efficacy), tighter sealed structures require lower dosage rates, which reduce the cost of future fumigations and cover the cost for the sealing materials and labor. When clean grain is transferred into a clean, sanitized structure with base and sidewalls well sealed, the main insect infestation and population growth should be on the grain surface in the structure headspace. Permanently sealing all non-functional base, sidewall and roof openings is the first priority of sealing storages. The second sealing priority is to seal functional openings at all times during the year when the component is not being used.

Source of the above stored grain pest management information:
Oklahoma State University Stored Products Research & Education Center Newsletter – Spring 2004  and Purdue’s Stored Product Pest factsheets:

Two excellent Stored Grain IPM resources:

“Stored Product Protection” – Practical guide to protecting grains and other raw commodities, food processing facilities, finished food, and durable plant and animal products from insects, molds, and vertebrate pests. Illustrated, 350 p. (http://www.ksre.ksu.edu/bookstore/pubs/S156.pdf)

Maintaining Quality in On-Farm Stored Grainhttps://utextension.tennessee.edu/publications/documents/PB1724.pdf


Degree Day Models for Field Crops across New York

Ken Wise, NYS IPM


Black Cutworm Degree Day Model

Degree Days                     Stage                           Feeding Activity

0                Moth Capture              Egg Laying

90              Eggs Hatch

91-311       1st to 3rd Instar          Leaf Feeding

312-364     4th Instar                     Cutting Begins

365-430     5th Instar                     Cutting Begins

431-640     6th Instar                     Cutting Slows

641-989     Pupa                            No feeding

Source: University of Minnesota Black Cutworm Trapping Network


2016 New York Field Crop Pest Degree Day Accumulations for selected locations

Station Location


(Base 50 F)

March 1

Black Cutworm

(Base 50 F)

April 20

Ceres 542 510
Chazy 618 612
Geneva 666 628
Highland 863 771
Ithaca 571 543
Long Island (Northport) 773 699
Massena 587 583
Ripley 709 641
Valatie 714 672
Versailles 657 610
Watertown 510 505
Wayland 610 568

NEWA Growing Degree Days




Clipboard Checklist

Keith Waldron, NYS IPM


*Walk fields to check general field condition, weed issues

*Watch for crop maturity, stand assessments, weed escapes, lodging issues


*Evaluate established legume stands for approximate days until harvest
*Monitor potato leafhopper
*Monitor new seedings for potato leafhopper, pythium blight, phytopthora root rot.

Small Grains:
*Monitor winter grain fields for growth stage, disease issues, cereal leaf beetle
*Check stands for diseases, cereal leaf beetle, weed escapes

*Monitor winter wheat and winter malting barley for signs of Fusarium Head Blight

*Monitor spring grains for potential risk of fungal diseases – consult Fusarium Head Blight prediction model


Conduct plant population assessments, early season corn pests including seed corn maggot, white grub, wireworm, black cutworm, armyworm, slugs, diseases, weed issues, vertebrate damage


Post emergence weed evaluation, timely cultivation and/or weed management
*Conduct plant population assessments, early season corn pests including seed corn maggot, slugs, soybean aphid, diseases, weed issues, vertebrate damage


Check and mend fences as needed.
*Check crop growth
*Invasive species, plants harmful to livestock
*Review/Plan rotation system


*Remove / clean soil and crop debris from equipment
Arrange for custom weed control or check your own application or cultivator equipment for repairs.
*Carry appropriate / necessary NYS DEC and EPA required documents: (pesticide applicators license, pesticide labels, MSDS sheets, etc.) with application equipment

  • planting equipment – maintain records on planting rate per field
  • manure spreaders – maintain records on amount spread per field
  • pesticide application equipment – Check nozzles, pumps, etc., recalibrate pesticide application equipment before use. Maintain pesticide use records


* Check stored grain bins for temperature, moisture and signs of mold and insects. Aerate, core, transfer grain or treat as necessary
Check forage allocation and anticipate feed program adjustments as forages from previous year are used up
*Plan where forages should be stored for optimum allocation next feeding season
*Mow around storage bins and facility to minimize pest hiding places


Dairy Cattle Barn Fly Management:
*Monitor animals and barn area for house fly, stable fly and other pest management needs including presence of rodents and birds.
*Check facilities for favorable fly breeding conditions: (organic matter + moisture): leaks in watering systems, roof gutters for leaks and potential overspill, drainage,
*Sanitation, sanitation, sanitation – clean animal resting areas, feed troughs, minimize source of moist organic matter i.e. fly breeding areas in barn and in adjacent animal loafing yard
* Continue fly monitoring: install “3X5″ index card fly speck monitoring cards throughout barn
*Use, replenish, replace fly management materials: sticky fly tapes/ribbons, insecticide baits, natural enemies (parasitoids), fly population monitoring (3 x 5) spot cards
*Consider purchase and release of Muscidifurax raptor and/or M. raptorellus natural enemies of house and stable fly pupae.

 Dairy Cattle on Pasture:
*Monitor animals for presence of face flies, horn flies and stable flies. Action guidelines: face flies (average 10 per animal face), horn flies (average 50 / dairy per animal side, 200 / beef cattle per animal side), stable flies average 10 per animal  (all four legs)
*Check feed bunk / water source locations for signs of stable fly breeding (moist undisturbed organic matter – spilled feed, round bales, etc.), minimize source of moist organic matter i.e. fly breeding areas in barn and in adjacent animal exercise yard.
*Check pasture for forage quality / quantity, rotate as appropriate
*Check pasture for vegetation poisonous to livestock
*Consider use of pasture fly traps to help reduce deer, horse and stable fly populations

Field Crop Events


Cornell University Willsboro Research Farm Open House Field Day


The Cornell University Willsboro Research Farm will hold an open house field day on Thursday, July 7 from 2:00pm to 4:30pm.  A tour of the facilities and research plots will leave the main office (48 Sayward Lane, Willsboro) at 2:30pm.  Light refreshments will be provided.

Research topics featured at this year’s open house include juneberry nursery development and variety trials, inter-seeded cover crops in field corn, high tunnel production of cherry tomatoes, demonstrations of summer cover crops, adaptive nitrogen management for field corn, and cold hardy wine grapes.

In 1982 E. Vreeland Baker, a Willsboro farmer and entrepreneur, donated his 352 acre farm to Cornell University for agricultural research and demonstration.  The facility serves to connect Cornell faculty in Ithaca with the challenges and issues facing North Country farmers.  Willsboro Research Farm is managed by the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station.

This event is cosponsored by the Essex Farm Institute (essexfarminstitute.org) and is free and open to the public.  For more information call 518-963-7492.

Michael Davis

Research Associate
Cornell University Willsboro Research Farm
48 Sayward Lane
Willsboro, NY  12996

Seed Growers Field Day

Thursday, July 7, 2016 at 9:00am to 12:00pm


2016 Aurora Farm Field Day

Thursday, July 14, 2016 at 9:00am to 3:00pm