Serious armyworm infestation in Ontario; Soybean aphids; Asiatic garden beetles

Armyworm infestation

Ontario is experiencing a serious armyworm infestation in wheat, the worst infestation in decades, with 20-40 larvae per square foot. In some areas, every wheat field has been treated. Caterpillars are now moving from wheat into corn. Ohio State also reported an armyworm outbreak, especially in northwest Ohio last week, but the wheat has progressed far enough that the problem is passing. Michigan appears to have dodged the worst of this problem.

Soybean aphids

Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio and Wisconsin report soybean aphids colonizing fields, although the numbers are low so far. Interestingly, aphids were observed in both untreated and in early-planted Cruiser-treated fields, probably because the seed treatment was starting to run out. For a current map of aphid detections and my commentary, visit the USDA PIPE web site at Unlike previous years, this web link directly goes to the aphid map, rather than popping to a soybean rust web site first.

Bruce Mackellar, MSUE Office in St Joseph County, in southwest Michigan reported Asiatic garden beetle adults emerging from fields in his area - see Bruce’s article later in this week’s
Cat Alert. Like Japanese beetle, Asiatic garden beetle does feed as an adult. Fortunately, it seems to favor ornamentals, like flowers, over corn and soybean. Unlike Japanese beetle, it is active mostly at night and thus adults may be difficult to observe. Bruce and I are interested in the timing of Asiatic garden beetle egg-laying, especially in potato fields. Any observations are appreciated. 

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