Blog Archives

Updates on the Sugarcane Aphid: A New Name, Insecticides for its Control, and Populations in 2022

New Name & Seasonal Update Since 2013, Melanaphis sacchari has been known as the sugarcane aphid; however, entomologist decided to change its name to sorghum aphid in view of the fact that sorghum is the main host of this pest.

Posted in Forages

Sugarcane Aphid in Kentucky Sorghum

The sugarcane aphid (SCA) was reported in Kentucky last week in Woodford County on sweet sorghum. This invasive pest can cause up to 100% crop loss if left untreated on grain, forage, and sweet sorghum. SCA cannot survive Kentucky winters

Posted in Forages, Grains

Presence of Fall Armyworms Detected in Forage Sorghum in Western KY

The larval stage of the fall armyworm (FAW), Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is a voracious defoliator of many plant species. The FAW is a native pest of the New World; however, it overwinters in south Florida or in the southernmost

Posted in Forages

Blister Beetles: One Group of the Insects of Summer

The sound of cicadas and katydids whining in the woods or velvet ants and blister beetles running around on the ground are signs of summer in Kentucky. However, our relationship with blister beetles is complicated. Depending on the situation, they

Posted in Forages

Don’t Get Burned by Potato Leafhopper…Hopperburn That Is!

Potato leafhoppers often go unnoticed until their characteristic damage to alfalfa begins to appear in early summer. Potato leafhopper is tiny and non-descript, hence, it is easy to overlook. It is the key insect pest of second and third cutting

Posted in Forages

Grass Sawflies in Hay

After the fall armyworm outbreak we experienced last fall in soybeans, alfalfa, pastures, and other crops, producers are wary of insects building up in their pastures and hay fields. Last week, we had a report from a producer in south

Posted in Forages

Conducive Weather for Seedcorn Maggot & Slugs Outbreaks in Field Crops

The rainy and cloudy weather we are currently observing in many growing areas of Kentucky may lead to outbreaks of seedcorn maggots and slugs in corn and soybeans. These pests are problems on emerging seedlings and reduce plant densities. If

Posted in Forages, Grains

Spring Is Coming … So Is Alfalfa Weevil!

The UK Ag Weather Center’s degree day (DD) model for alfalfa weevil indicates that many counties in Kentucky are likely to exceed 190 DD (used as a starting point to begin scouting) by the third week of March. Once temperature

Posted in Forages

Fall Armyworm Update

Fall armyworm reports continue to come in with a wide range of crops attacked, including pasture grasses (crabgrass, Bermuda grass, orchard grass, sorghum-Sudan grass), alfalfa, clover, soybean, sorghum, and cabbage. The pest has a wide host range including over 80

Posted in Forages, General Pests, Grains

Why are My Fall Armyworm Melting?

The have been a few reports of fall armyworm (FAW) larvae ‘melting’ on plants. This is likely due to infections of the larvae by a naturally occurring nucleopolyhedrovirus, usually referred to as an NPV. There are many different types of

Posted in Forages, Grains

Fall Armyworm May Have a Persistent Presence as Oviposition Lingers in August

During July of 2021, fall armyworm Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) caused serious damage in soybeans and forages in Central and Western Kentucky. Fall armyworm is a polyphagous pest that feeds on many plant species of the Poaceae (grasses, including rice,

Posted in Forages, Grains

Fall Armyworm Outbreak: Round Two

About a month ago, we experienced a large fall armyworm moth flight into the state from southern areas. This resulted in outbreaks in Western Kentucky in pastures, sorghum, and soybeans, primarily double-crop beans.  Some surrounding states consider this the biggest

Posted in Forages, Grains, Lawn & Turf

Fall Armyworm Moth Numbers Increasing

Fall armyworm (FAW) is a migratory pest that re-infests Kentucky each summer and is killed by frost in the fall. It often shows up later in the season after corn has tassled and lost its attractiveness to this pest. But

Posted in Forages

Watch Pastures for True Armyworm

There has been one report of true armyworm in pastures, and moth numbers increased dramatically the week before last in Lexington. While I also have a KPN article on fall armyworm in western Kentucky this week, keep in mind these

Posted in Forages

Alfalfa Weevil and Insecticide Resistance

This past week, I received a report of high levels of alfalfa weevil larvae following an insecticide application. The producer was concerned that the insecticide he was using was not effective. I visited with the grower and collected several hundred

Posted in Forages, Pesticide Topics