Released July 29, 2022

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

This week includes…..

• Weather synopsis
• Predicted grasshopper development
• Predicted diamondback development
• Predicted wheat midge development
• Aphids in field crops
• Lygus bug monitoring
• Cabbage seedpod weevil monitoring
• Pea leaf weevil monitoring
• West Nile virus risk
• Extension survey for Albertans
• Pre-harvest intervals (PHI)
• Provincial insect pest report links
• Crop report links
• Previous posts
….and Monday’s Insect of the Week for Week 12 – it’s Western bean cutworm (Striacosta albicosta)!

Wishing everyone good SCOUTING weather!

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Questions or problems accessing the contents of this Weekly Update?  Please contact us so we can connect you to our information. Past “Weekly Updates” can be accessed on our Weekly Update page.

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Weather synopsis

Ross Weiss, Tamara Rounce, David Giffen, Owen Olfert, Jennifer Otani and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 12

TEMPERATURE: Though temperatures over the past 30 days have been warmer than normal, the 2022 growing season across the prairies has been quite similar to that of a ‘normal’ or long-term average season. This past week (July 18-24, 2022), the average daily temperature on the prairies was 2 °C cooler than the average daily temperature of the previous week and 1 °C warmer than the long-term normal temperature. The coolest temperatures were observed across central and northern Alberta (Fig. 1).

Figure 1. Seven-day average temperature (°C) across the Canadian prairies for the period of July 18-24, 2022.

The prairie-wide average 30-day temperature (June 25 – July 24, 2022) was 0.5 °C warmer than the long-term average value. Average temperatures have been warmest across the southern prairies (Fig. 2).

Figure 2. 30-day average temperature (°C) across the Canadian prairies for the period of June 25-July 24, 2022.

The average growing season (April 1-July 24, 2022) temperature for the prairies has been 0.2 °C cooler than the climate normal values. The growing season has been warmest across the southern prairies (Fig. 3).

Figure 3. Growing season average temperature (°C) observed across the Canadian prairies for the period of April 1 to July 24, 2022.

PRECIPITATION: Weekly rainfall accumulation for July 18 to 24 varied across the prairies. Very little precipitation has fallen across the northern prairies (Fig. 4). Observed rainfall amounts across central and northern Alberta were generally less than 5 mm. 30-day (June 25 – July 24, 2022) rainfall amounts have been well below average for the northern prairies and near normal across the southern prairies (Fig. 5).

Figure 4 Seven-day cumulative rainfall (mm) observed across the Canadian prairies for the period of July 18-24, 2022.
Figure 5. 30-day cumulative rainfall (mm) observed across the Canadian prairies the past 30 days (June 25-July 24, 2022).

Growing season rainfall for April 1 – July 24, 2022, continues to be greatest across Manitoba and eastern Saskatchewan; cumulative rainfall amounts have been much lower for the central and western regions of Saskatchewan and Alberta (Fig. 6).

Figure 6. Growing season cumulative rainfall (mm) observed across the Canadian prairies for the period of April 1 to July 24, 2022.

Growing degree day (GDD) maps for Base 5 ºC and Base 10 ºC (April 1-July 25, 2022) can be viewed by clicking the hyperlinks. Over the past 7 days (July 12-18, 2022), the lowest temperatures recorded across the Canadian prairies ranged from < 0 to >12 °C while the highest temperatures observed ranged from <23 to >32 °C. Review the days at or above 25 °C across the prairies and also the days at or above 30 °C. Access these maps and more using the AAFC Maps of Historic Agroclimate Conditions interface.

The maps above are all produced by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Growers can bookmark the AAFC Current Conditions Maps for the growing season. Historical weather data can be accessed at the AAFC Drought Watch Historical website, Environment Canada’s Historical Data website, or your provincial weather network. The AAFC Canadian Drought Monitor also provides geospatial maps updated monthly.

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Predicted grasshopper development

Ross Weiss, Tamara Rounce, David Giffen, Owen Olfert, Jennifer Otani and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 12

The grasshopper (Acrididae: Melanoplus sanguinipes) model predicts development using biological parameters known for the pest species and environmental data observed across the Canadian prairies on a daily basis. Model outputs provided below as geospatial maps are a tool to help time in-field scouting on a regional scale yet local development can vary and is only accurately assessed through in-field scouting.

Some areas of the Canadian prairies are presently experiencing high densities of economically important species. Review lifecycle and damage information for this pest to support in-field scouting.

Model simulations were used to estimate grasshopper development as of July 24, 2022. As a result of above-normal temperatures, grasshopper development has rapidly progressed over the past few weeks. Last week, adults were just beginning to appear. Based on estimates of average development, populations should consist of 4th (25%) and 5th (34%) instar nymphs and adults (19%) across the southern regions of all three prairie provinces (Fig. 1). Adults should now be occurring across the southern regions of all three prairie provinces (Fig. 2). Potential risk continues to be greatest across the central and southern regions of Saskatchewan.

Figure 1. Predicted migratory grasshopper (Melanoplus sanguinipes) development, presented as average instar, across the Canadian prairies as of July 24, 2022.
Figure 2. Long-term average predicted migratory grasshopper (Melanoplus sanguinipes) development, presented as the percent adults, across the Canadian prairies as of July 17, 2022.

Grasshopper Scouting Tips:
Review grasshopper diversity and photos of nymphs, adults, and non-grasshopper species to aid in-field scouting from egg hatch and onwards.
● Access the PPMN’s Grasshopper Monitoring Protocol as a guide to help implement in-field monitoring.
● Review grasshopper lifecycle, damage and scouting and economic thresholds to support sound management decisions enabling the preservation of beneficial arthropods and mitigation of economic losses.

Biological and monitoring information (including tips for scouting and economic thresholds) related to grasshoppers in field crops is posted by Manitoba Agriculture and Resource DevelopmentSaskatchewan AgricultureAlberta Agriculture and Forestry, the BC Ministry of Agriculture, and the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network.  Also, refer to the grasshopper pages within the “Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada: Identification and management field guide” (2018) accessible as a free downloadable PDF in either English or French on our new Field Guides page. Review the historical grasshopper maps based on late-summer in-field counts of adults performed across the prairies.

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Predicted diamondback moth development

Ross Weiss, Tamara Rounce, David Giffen, Owen Olfert, Jennifer Otani and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 12

Diamondback moths (DBM; Plutella xylostella) are a migratory invasive species. Each spring adult populations migrate northward to the Canadian prairies on wind currents from infested regions in the southern or western U.S.A. Upon arrival to the prairies, migrant diamondback moths begin to reproduce and this results in subsequent non-migrant populations that may have three or four generations during the growing season.

Model simulations to July 24, 2022, indicate that the third generation of non-migrant adults (based on mid-May arrival dates) are currently occurring across the southern prairies (Fig. 1). DBM development is predicted to be marginally greater than long-term average values (Fig. 2).

Figure 1. Predicted number of non-migrant generations of diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) expected to have occurred across the Canadian prairies as of July 24, 2022.
Figure 2. Long-term predicted number of non-migrant generations of diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) expected to have occurred across the Canadian prairies as of July 24, based on climate normal data.

Spring Pheromone Trap Monitoring of Adult Males: Across the Canadian prairies, spring monitoring is initiated to acquire weekly counts of adult moths attracted to pheromone-baited delta traps deployed in fields. Weekly trap interceptions are observed to generate cumulative counts. Summaries or maps of cumulative DBM data are available for Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta. These cumulative count estimates are broadly categorized to help producers prioritize and time in-field scouting for larvae.

In-Field Monitoring: Remove plants in an area measuring 0.1 m² (about 12″ square), beat them onto a clean surface and count the number of larvae (Fig. 2) dislodged from the plant. Repeat this procedure at least in five locations in the field to get an accurate count.

Figure 2. Diamondback larva measuring ~8mm long.
Note brown head capsule and forked appearance of prolegs on posterior.

The economic threshold for diamondback moth in canola at the advanced pod stage is 20 to 30 larvae/ 0.1  (approximately 2-3 larvae per plant).  Economic thresholds for canola or mustard in the early flowering stage are not available. However, insecticide applications are likely required at larval densities of 10 to 15 larvae/ 0.1 m² (approximately 1-2 larvae per plant).

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is DBM_Pupa_AAFC-1.jpg
Figure 3. Diamondback moth pupa within silken cocoon.
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is DBM_adult_AAFC-1.png
Figure 4. Diamondback moth.

Biological and monitoring information for DBM (including tips for scouting and economic thresholds) is posted by Manitoba Agriculture and Resource DevelopmentSaskatchewan Agriculture, and the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network.  Also, refer to the diamondback moth pages within the “Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada: Identification and management field guide” (2018) accessible as a free downloadable PDF in either English or French on our new Field Guides page.

Diamondback moth was the Insect of the Week for Wk10 in 2021!

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Predicted wheat midge development

Ross Weiss, Tamara Rounce, David Giffen, Owen Olfert, Jennifer Otani and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 12

The following maps represent predicted regional estimates of wheat midge development. Remember – field level populations are assessed only through in-field scouting.

As of July 24, 2022, where wheat midge is present, model simulations predict that Albertan populations should be primarily in the egg stage, while populations across Manitoba and eastern Saskatchewan should consist of larvae developing in wheat heads (Fig. 1).

Figure 1. Wheat midge larvae (AAFC)

Regional differences in wheat midge development can be attributed to rainfall differences that occurred in May and June. Optimal rainfall in May and June across Saskatchewan and Manitoba has resulted in faster rates of wheat midge development rates than in Alberta. As a result, some adult wheat midge may still be active in Alberta (Fig. 2), while adult populations should have peaked and should be declining across Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Populations in the Peace River region are predicted to be primarily in the egg stage (Fig. 3). Across Manitoba and Saskatchewan, populations are predicted to be transitioning from the egg stage to the larval stage (Fig. 4). Wheat midge developmental rates near Regina, Saskatchewan are predicted to be greater than for Grande Prairie, Alberta.

Figure 2. Percent of wheat midge larval population (Sitodiplosis mosellana) that is in the adult stage, across western Canada, as of July 24, 2022.
Figure. 3. Percent of wheat midge population (Sitodiplosis mosellana) that is in the egg stage across western Canada, as of July 24, 2022.
Figure 4. Percent of wheat midge population (Sitodiplosis mosellana) that is in the larval stage (in wheat heads), across western Canada, as of July 24, 2022.

Model simulations indicate that egg development is complete and populations are primarily in the larval stage (>90%) for populations near Regina (Fig. 5) while Grande Prairie populations are predicted be in both egg (31%) and larval stages (61%) (Fig. 6). Potential risk continues to be greatest across eastern Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Figure 5. Predicted development of wheat midge (Sitodiplosis mosellana) and wheat development near Regina, Saskatchewan as of July 24, 2022.
Figure 6. Predicted development of wheat midge (Sitodiplosis mosellana) and wheat development near Grande Prairie, Alberta, as of July 24, 2022.

In-Field Monitoring: The window for scouting and application of the economic threshold for wheat midge (i.e., during the synchrony between wheat anthesis and midge flight period) has now drawn to a close for 2022. 

Information related to wheat midge biology and monitoring can be accessed by linking to your provincial fact sheet (Saskatchewan Agriculture or Alberta Agriculture & Forestry).  Wheat midge was featured as the Insect of the Week in 2021 (for Wk07).

Additional information can be accessed by reviewing the Wheat midge pages extracted from the “Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada: Identification and Field Guide” (2018) accessible as a free downloadable PDF in either English or French on our new Field Guides page.

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Aphids in field crops

Jennifer Otani and Tyler Wist
Categories
Week 12

Aphid populations can quickly increase at this point in the season and particularly when growing conditions are warm and dry. Over the years, both the Weekly Updates and Insect of the Week included aphid-related information so here’s a list of these items to access when scouting fields:

Aphidius wasp (Insect of the Week; 2015 Wk15)
Aphids in canola (Insect of the Week; 2016 Wk13)
Aphids in cereals (Insect of the Week; 2017 Wk09)
Cereal aphid manager APP (Weekly Update; 2021 Wk07)
Ladybird larva vs. lacewing larva (Insect of the Week; 2019 Wk18)
Ladybird beetles and mummies (Weekly Update; 2020 Wk15)
Lygus bug nymphs vs. aphids (Insect of the Week; 2019 Wk16)
Hoverflies vs. bees vs. yellow jacket wasps (Insect of the Week; 2019 Wk19)
Syrphid flies (Insect of the Week; 2015 Wk16)

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Lygus bug monitoring

Jennifer Otani and Hector Carcamo
Categories
Week 12

On the Canadian prairies, lygus bugs (Heteroptera: Miridae) are normally a complex of several native species usually including Lygus lineolaris, L. keltoni, L. borealis, L. elisus although several more species are distributed throughout Canada. The species of Lygus forming the “complex” can vary by host plant, by region or even seasonally.

Lygus bugs are polyphagous (i.e., feed on plants belonging to several Families of plants) and multivoltine (i.e., capable of producing multiple generations per year). Both the adult (Fig. 1) and five nymphal instar stages (Fig. 2) are a sucking insect that focuses feeding activities on developing buds, pods and seeds. Adults overwinter in northern climates. The economic threshold for Lygus in canola is applied at late flower and early pod stages.  

Recent research in Alberta has resulted in a revision to the thresholds recommended for the management of Lygus in canola. Under ideal growing conditions (i.e., ample moisture) a threshold of 20-30 lygus per 10 sweeps is recommended. Under dry conditions, a lower threshold may be used, however, because drought limits yield potential in canola, growers should be cautious if considering the use of foliar-applied insecticide at lygus densities below the established threshold of 20-30 per 10 sweeps. In drought-affected fields that still support near-average yield potential, a lower threshold of ~20 lygus per 10 sweeps may be appropriate for stressed canola. Even if the current value of canola remains high (e.g., >$19.00 per bu), control at densities of <10 lygus per 10 sweeps is not likely to be economical. Research indicates that lygus numbers below 10 per 10 sweeps (one per sweep) can on occasion increase yield in good growing conditions – likely through plant compensation for a small amount of feeding stress.

Figure 1. Adult Lygus lineolaris (5-6 mm long) (photo: AAFC-Saskatoon).
Figure 2. Fifth instar lygus bug nymph (3-4 mm long) (photo: AAFC-Saskatoon).

Damage: Lygus bugs have piercing-sucking mouthparts and physically damage the plant by puncturing the tissue and sucking plant juices. The plants also react to the toxic saliva that the insects inject when they feed. Lygus bug infestations can cause alfalfa to have short stem internodes, excessive branching, and small, distorted leaves. In canola, lygus bugs feed on buds and blossoms and cause them to drop. They also puncture seed pods and feed on the developing seeds causing them to turn brown and shrivel.

Scouting tips to keep in mind: Begin monitoring canola when it bolts and continue until seeds within the pods are firm. Since adults can move into canola from alfalfa, check lygus bug numbers in canola when nearby alfalfa crops are cut.

Sample the crop for lygus bugs on a sunny day when the temperature is above 20 °C and the crop canopy is dry. With a standard insect net (38 cm diameter), take ten 180 ° sweeps. Count the number of lygus bugs in the net. Sampling becomes more representative IF repeated at multiple spots within a field so sweep in at least 10 locations within a field to estimate the density of lygus bugs.

How to tell them apart: The 2019 Insect of the Week’s doppelganger for Wk 15 was lygus bug versus the alfalfa plant bug while Wk 16 featured lygus bug nymphs vs. aphids!  Both posts include tips to discern the difference between when doing in-field scouting!

Biological and monitoring information related to Lygus in field crops is posted by the provinces of Manitoba or Alberta fact sheets or the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network’s monitoring protocol.  Also refer to the Lygus pages within the “Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada: Identification and management field guide” (2018) accessible as a free downloadable PDF in either English or French on our new Field Guides page. The Canola Council of Canada’s “Canola Encyclopedia” also summarizes Lygus bugs. The Flax Council of Canada includes Lygus bugs in their Insect Pest downloadable PDF chapter plus the Saskatchewan Pulse Growers summarize Lygus bugs in faba beans.

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Cabbage seedpod weevil monitoring

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

There is one generation of cabbage seedpod weevil (CSPW; Ceutorhynchus obstrictus) per year. The overwintered adult is an ash-grey weevil measuring 3-4mm long (e.g., lower left photo).  Mating and oviposition are quickly followed by eggs hatching within developing canola pods (e.g., lower right photo). The highly concealed larvae feed within the pod, consuming the developing seeds.

Damage: Adult feeding damage to buds is more evident in dry years when canola is unable to compensate for bud loss.  Adults mate following a pollen meal then the female will deposit a single egg through the wall of a developing pod or adjacent to a developing seed within the pod (refer to lower right photo).  Eggs are oval and an opaque white, each measuring ~1mm long.  Typically a single egg is laid per pod although, when CSPW densities are high, two or more eggs may be laid per pod.

There are four larval instar stages of the CSPW and each stage is white and grub-like in appearance ranging up to 5-6mm in length (refer to lower left photo).  The first instar larva feeds on the cuticle on the outside of the pod while the second instar larva bores into the pod, feeding on the developing seeds.  A single larva consumes about 5 canola seeds.  The mature larva chews a small, circular exit hole from which it drops to the soil surface and pupation takes place in the soil within an earthen cell.  Approximately 10 days later, the new adult emerges to feed on maturing canola pods.  Later in the season, these new adults migrate to overwintering sites beyond the field.

Monitoring:

  • Begin sampling when the crop first enters the bud stage and continue through the flowering. 
  • Sweep-net samples should be taken at ten locations within the field with ten 180° sweeps per location.  
  • Count the number of weevils at each location. Samples should be taken in the field perimeter as well as throughout the field.  
  • Adults will invade fields from the margins and if infestations are high in the borders, application of an insecticide to the field margins may be effective in reducing the population to levels below which economic injury will occur.  
  • An insecticide application is recommended when three to four weevils per sweep are collected and has been shown to be the most effective when canola is in the 10 to 20% bloom stage (2-4 days after flowering starts). 
  • Consider making insecticide applications late in the day to reduce the impact on pollinators.  Whenever possible, provide advanced warning of intended insecticide applications to commercial beekeepers operating in the vicinity to help protect foraging pollinators.  
  • High numbers of adults in the fall may indicate the potential for economic infestations the following spring.

Albertan growers can report and check the live map for CSPW posted by Alberta Agriculture and Forestry (screenshot provided below for reference; retrieved 2022Jul28).

CSPW was the Insect of the Week for Wk08 in 2021!

Please find additional detailed information for CSPW in fact sheets posted by Alberta Agriculture and ForestrySaskatchewan Agriculture, or the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network.  Also refer to the cabbage seedpod weevil pages within the “Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada: Identification and management field guide” (2018) accessible as a free downloadable PDF in either English or French on our new Field Guides page. The Canola Council of Canada’s “Canola Encyclopedia” also summarizes CSPW.

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Pea leaf weevil monitoring

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

The pea leaf weevil is a slender greyish-brown insect measuring approximately 5 mm in length (Fig. 1, Left image). Pea leaf weevil resembles the sweet clover weevil (Sitona cylindricollis) but the former is distinguished by three light-coloured stripes extending length-wise down thorax and sometimes the abdomen.  All species of Sitona, including the pea leaf weevil, have a short snout.  

Figure 1.  Comparison images and descriptions of four Sitona species adults including pea leaf weevil (AAFC-Otani).

Adults will feed upon the leaf margins and growing points of legume seedlings (alfalfa, clover, dry beans, faba beans, peas) and produce a characteristic, scalloped (notched) edge (Fig. 2).  Females lay their eggs in the soil either near or on developing pea or faba bean plants from May to June.

Figure 2. Examples of adult pea leaf weevil damage on field pea seedlings, (A) seedling with notches on all nodes, (B) stereotypical crescent shaped notches on the leaf margin, (C) clam or terminal leaf of the pea seedling with arrows indicating the feeding notches.
All photos courtesy of Dr. L. Dosdall.

Larvae develop under the soil and are “C” shaped and milky-white with a dark-brown head capsule ranging in length from 3.5-5.5 mm (Figure 3).  Larvae develop through five instar stages.  After hatching, larvae seek and enter the roots of a pea plant.  Larvae will enter and consume the contents of the nodules of the legume host plant. It is the nodules that are responsible for nitrogen-fixation which affect yield plus the plant’s ability to input nitrogen into the soil. Consumption of or damage to the nodules (Figure 4) results in partial or complete inhibition of nitrogen fixation by the plant and results in poor plant growth and low seed yields.

Figure 3. Larva of pea leaf weevil in soil (Photo: L. Dosdall).
Figure 4. Damaged pea nodules (Photo: L. Dosdall).

Biological and monitoring information related to pea leaf weevil in field crops is posted by the province of Alberta and in the PPMN monitoring protocol. Also access the Pea leaf weevil page from the Field Crop and Forage Pests and their Natural Enemies in Western Canada: Identification and Management field guide. (en français : Guide d’identification des ravageurs des grandes cultures et des cultures fourragères et de leurs ennemis naturels et mesures de lutte applicables à l’Ouest canadien).

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West nile virus risk

David Giffen, Tamara Rounce, Owen Olfert, Jennifer Otani and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 12

The following is offered to help predict when Culex tarsalis, the vector for West Nile Virus, will begin to fly across the Canadian prairies. This week, regions most advanced in degree-day accumulations for Culex tarsalis are shown in Figure 1 but the unusual heat across the prairies greatly accelerated mosquito development!

As of July 24, 2022, C. tarsalis development is now on the verge of the second generation of adults beginning to fly in areas highlighted yellow (i.e., 250-300 DD of base 14.3 °C) represented below in Figure 1. Outdoor enthusiasts falling within areas highlighted orange or yellow should begin to wear DEET to protect against WNV! Historically, southern and central regions of the Canadian prairies are now in a period of increased risk for WNV that typically peaks over the long weekend in August.

Figure 1. Predicted development of Culex tarsalis across the Canadian prairies (as of July 24, 2022).

For those following the specifics of the mosquito host-WNV interaction, Figure 2 projects how many days it will take a C. tarsalis female to become fully infective and be able to transmit the virus to another host (bird or human) once the virus is acquired from another bird. This represents the extrinsic incubation period (EIP) of the virus within the mosquito. Figure 2 projects the EIP is approximately 17 days in areas highlighted red and approximately 15 days in areas highlighted pink.

Figure 2. Predicted extrinsic incubation period (EIP) of West Nile Virus within a C. tarsalis female as of July 24, 2022.

The above maps should be compared with historical confirmed cases of WNV. The Public Health Agency of Canada posts information related to West Nile Virus in Canada and also tracks West Nile Virus through human, mosquito, bird and horse surveillance. Link here to access their most current weekly update (reporting date November 18, 2021; retrieved July 28, 2022). The screenshot below (retrieved 28Jul2022) serves as a background reference of what was reported in 2021.

Bird surveillance continues to be an important way to detect and monitor West Nile Virus. The Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative (CWHC) works with governmental agencies (i.e., provincial laboratories and the National Microbiology Laboratory) and other organizations to report the occurrence of WNV. Dead birds retrieved from areas of higher risk of West Nile Virus are tested for the virus. A screenshot of the latest reporting results posted by Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative is below (retrieved 28Jul2022).

Anyone keen to identify mosquitoes will enjoy this pictorial key for both larvae and adults which is posted on the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) website but sadly lacks a formal citation other than “MOSQUITOES: CHARACTERISTICS OF ANOPHELINES AND CULICINES prepared by Kent S. Littig and Chester J. Stojanovich” and includes Pages 134-150. The proper citation may be Stojanovich, Chester J. & Louisiana Mosquito Control Association. (1982). Mosquito control training manual. pp 152.

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Extension survey for Albertans

Ilan Domnich and Maya Evenden
Categories
Week 12

Prompted by recent discussions at Results Driven Agriculture Research (RDAR) meetings, a survey has been initiated as part of an M.Sc. research project in the Faculty of Science at the University of Alberta to assess the effectiveness and producer preferences for entomological extension in agriculture in Alberta. The project is funded by RDAR and the Alberta Pulse Growers.

Albertans can read the description of the survey or opt to complete the 20-minute online survey.

More information about this survey can be gained by contacting Ilan Domnich (domnich@ualberta.ca) or Dr. Maya Evenden (mevenden@ualberta.ca).

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Pre-Harvest Intervals (PHI)

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

Start to consider pre-harvest intervals. The PHI refers to the minimum number of days between a pesticide application and swathing or straight combining of a crop.  The PHI recommends sufficient time for a pesticide to break down. PHI values are both crop- and pesticide-specific.  Adhering to the PHI is important for a number of health-related reasons but also because Canada’s export customers strictly regulate and test for the presence of trace residues of pesticides.

Here are a few resources to help:
• Information about PHI and Maximum Residue Limits (MRL) is available on the Keeping It Clean website.
• The Pest Management Regulatory Agency has a fact sheet, “Understanding Preharvest Intervals for Pesticides” or download a free PDF copy.
• Use Keeping It Clean’s “Spray to Swath Interval Calculator” to accurately estimate:
◦ PHI for canola, chickpeas, lentils, faba beans, dry beans, or peas.
◦ How long to wait, if the crop’s already been sprayed.
◦ To find a pesticide to suit your timeline.
• Access the Pre-Harvest Glyphosate Stage Guide.
• And remember Provincial crop protection guides include the PHI for every pesticide x crop combination. The 2022 Crop Production Guides are available as a FREE downloadable PDF for Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.

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Provincial insect pest report links

Jennifer Otani, John Gavloski, James Tansey, Carter Peru and Shelley Barkley
Categories
Week 12

Provincial entomologists provide insect pest updates throughout the growing season so link to their information:

MANITOBA’S Crop Pest Updates for 2022 are up and running! Access a PDF copy of the July 27, 2022 issue here. Bookmark their Crop Pest Update Index to readily access these reports and also bookmark their insect pest homepage to access fact sheets and more!
• Pea aphids, aphids in small grains, grasshoppers and armyworm larvae in MB were emphasized in the July 27 issue.
Bertha armyworm pheromone trap monitoring is underway in MB – Review this summary (as of July 26, 2022) of cumulative weekly counts.
Armyworm pheromone trap monitoring is underway in MB – Review this summary (as of July 12, 2022) of counts compiled from Manitoba, Eastern Canada and several northeast states of the United States.

SASKATCHEWAN’S Crop Production News for 2022 is up and running! Access the online Issue #5 (URL retrieved July 28, 2022) and find updates linking to information for Beneficial insects, and Managing grasshoppers. Bookmark their insect pest homepage to access important information! Crops Blog Posts are updated through the growing season and note this link for July’s Crop Diagnostic School.

ALBERTA’S Insect Pest Monitoring Network webpage links to insect survey maps, live feed maps, insect trap set-up videos, and more. There is also a Major Crops Insect webpage. The new webpage does not replace the Insect Pest Monitoring Network page. Remember, AAF’s Agri-News occasionally includes insect-related information. Twitter users can connect to #ABBugChat Wednesdays at 10:00 am.
Wheat midge pheromone monitoring update for AB – Cumulative counts arising from weekly data are available on this Live Map.
Cabbage seedpod weevil monitoring update for AB – Cumulative counts arising from weekly data are available on this Live Map.
Bertha armyworm pheromone trap monitoring update for AB – Cumulative counts arising from weekly data are available on this Live Map.

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Crop report links

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

Click the provincial name below to link to online crop reports produced by:
Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development (or access a PDF copy of the July 26, 2022 report).
Saskatchewan Agriculture (or access a PDF copy of the July 19-25, 2022 report).
Alberta Agriculture, Forestry, and Rural Economic Development (or access a PDF copy of the July 12, 2022 report).

The following crop reports are also available:
• The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) produces a Crop Progress Report (access a PDF copy of the July 25, 2022 edition).
• The USDA’s Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin (access a PDF copy of the July 26, 2022 edition).

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Previous posts

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

As the growing season progresses, the various Weekly Update topics move on and off the priority list for in-field scouting but they should be kept at hand to support season-long monitoring. Click to review these earlier 2022 Posts (organized alphabetically):
2021 Risk and forecast maps
Alfalfa weevil – predicted development (Wk06)
Bertha armyworm – predicted development (Wk07)
Cereal leaf beetle – predicted development (Wk06)
Crop protection guides (Wk02)
Cutworms (Wk02)
European corn borer – Canadian standardized assessment 2.0 (Wk02)
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WESTERN BEAN CUTWORM – WILL THE RANGE EXPANSION REACH THE PRAIRIES?

John Gavloski, Jocelyn Smith and Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 12

Western bean cutworm (Striacosta albicosta) is a native North American insect that, at high levels, can be a pest of corn and dry beans. However, the way they feed is different than some of the other cutworms many may be familiar with. Western bean cutworm feeds on the reproductive parts of plants (corn tassel, silks, and kernels, or dry bean pods and seeds). This can result in yield loss, and spread ear mold. In Ontario, injury by western bean cutworm has been shown to increase mycotoxin production in grain corn.

Range Expansion: The historical geographic range of the western bean cutworm covered the western Great Plains states including Colorado, Nebraska, and Wyoming but, over the past two decades, its distribution has been more easterly rather than north to the prairies. A report from the 1950s of western bean cutworm in Alberta has instead been confirmed as a misidentification of another species. Currently, it has not been detected in the Canadian prairie provinces. Since 1999, the geographic range of the western bean cutworm has rapidly expanded eastward across the U.S. Corn Belt and eastern Canada. Western bean cutworm adults have been collected in 22 additional states and provinces since 1999, spreading from western Iowa to the east coast of the United States and Canada. It was first found in Canada in Ontario in 2008. Keep an eye open for this insect when scouting for crop pests in corn or dry beans this summer.

Figure 1. Detailed expansion of western bean cutworm distribution into the eastern Corn Belt between 2000 and 2017. From: Smith et al. 2019. Journal of Integrated Pest Management. Volume 10, Issue 1, pg. 1-19.

Appearance and monitoring tips:
Larvae:
• There are six stages (instars) of the larvae, and appearances vary.
• Older larvae are a light tan colour, with an orange head. The pronotum (the shield-like structure just behind the head) has two broad dark brown stripes.
• You may find young larvae on the silks of corn. Older larvae may be on the ears of corn, but you may have to peel back the husks to find them (Fig. 2).

Figure 2. Western bean cutworm feeding on corn. Photo: Jocelyn Smith, University of Guelph.


Adults:
• Each forewing has a white or tan band running along the edge or margin of the wing (Fig. 3). Inside this band are 2 distinctive markings: a brown circle and a brown kidney bean shape, both surrounded by a tan border.
Note – Other moths across the Canadian prairies, such as redbacked cutworm, have similar markings.

Figure 3. Western bean cutworm adult. Photo: Jocelyn Smith, University of Guelph.

Please help – When monitoring in the Canadian prairies, adults or larvae suspected to be western bean cutworm can be directed to your provincial entomologist for species verification. New and confirmed sightings of this species are important and will help mobilize research and pest management strategies.

Additional information on western bean cutworm can be found in the publication “Western Bean Cutworm” by the Canadian Corn Pest Coalition: https://cornpest.ca/corn-pests/western-bean-cutworm/

Did you know? Bt corn with the Vip3A protein effectively controls western bean cutworm, but some of the Bt corn products for European corn borer will not.

Reference:
Ecology and Management of the Western Bean Cutworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in Corn and Dry Beans—Revision With Focus on the Great Lakes Region. 2019. J. L. Smith, C. D. Difonzo, T. S. Baute, A. P. Michel, and C. H. Krupke, Journal of Integrated Pest Management, Volume 10, Issue 1: 1-19.

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