Western bean cutworm laying eggs in corn

Get rid of those egg masses (like the ones found in Montcalm County today) by contacting Chris DiFonzo and donating them to research plots.

Western bean cutworm moths are being trapped throughout Michigan, and egg masses were found on corn today, July 15, in Montcalm County (corn in the late V-stage). A map of the current trap catch is on the MSU Field Crops Entomology website. Trap catch thus far is less than in 2010. Some of the difference is the result of fewer people trapping or reporting counts, but also degree day accumulations were way ahead by this time last year.

With the wide difference in crop stages across fields, western bean cutworm moths may accumulate in the most mature (pre-tassel) fields and deposit a lot of eggs. This is most likely to happen in southwest Michigan and Montcalm and surrounding counties, where western bean cutworm populations are the highest. Beyond Michigan, the western bean cutworm hot spot is across the border near Bothwell, Ontario. This area had a lot of egglaying last summer. Moths were emerging and laying eggs on corn earlier this week. The leading edge of the western bean cutworm outbreak may have moved east to our friends in Ontario.

Chris’ lab is looking for a few good eggs - western bean cutworm eggs, that is

If you find western bean cutworm egg masses in corn (5 percent or more infestation), we will swoop in and take the egg masses away to infest research plots (and perhaps leave baked goods in return). Please leave a message with Megan Chludzinki at 517-432-3653, Chris DiFonzo at 517-420-5378, or in Montcalm County, Fred Springborn at 989-831-7500.

Dr. DiFonzo’s work is funded in part by MSU‘s AgBioResearch.

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