Released August 5, 2022

Meghan Vankosky and Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 13

This week includes…..

• Weather synopsis
• Predicted grasshopper development
• Predicted diamondback development
• Aphids in field crops
• Lygus bug monitoring
• Pre-harvest intervals (PHI)
• Provincial insect pest report links
• Crop report links
• Previous posts
….and Monday’s Insect of the Week for Week 13 – it’s spotted wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii)!

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 13

TEMPERATURE: Average temperatures for the 2022 growing season have been similar to long-term average temperature values. This past week (July 25-31, 2022), the average daily temperature on the prairies was 1 °C cooler than the average daily temperature of the previous week and 1.5 °C warmer than the long-term normal temperature. The coolest temperatures were observed across Manitoba and eastern Saskatchewan (Fig. 1).

Figure 1. Seven-day average temperature (°C) across the Canadian prairies for the period of July 25-31, 2022.

The prairie-wide average 30-day temperature (July 2 – July 31, 2022) was 1.5 °C warmer than the long-term average value. Average temperatures have been warmest across a region that extends south from Lethbridge to Saskatoon to Winnipeg (Fig. 2).

Figure 2. 30-day average temperature (°C) across the Canadian prairies for the period of July 02 to July 31, 2022.

The average growing season (April 1-July 31, 2022) temperature for the prairies has been similar to climate normal values. The growing season has been coolest across the Parkland and Peace River regions (Fig. 3).

Figure 3. Growing season average temperature (°C) observed across the Canadian prairies for the period of April 1 to July 31, 2022.

PRECIPITATION: Last week (July 25 to 31), southern Alberta and southwestern Saskatchewan received the lowest amounts of rain of locations across the prairies (Fig. 4). Over the last 30 days (July 2 – July 31, 2022), rainfall amounts have been well below average for northern Alberta and near normal across the central and southern regions of Alberta and Saskatchewan (Fig. 5).

Figure 4 Seven-day cumulative rainfall (mm) observed across the Canadian prairies for the period of July 25-31, 2022.
Figure 5. 30-day cumulative rainfall (mm) observed across the Canadian prairies the past 30 days (July 02 – July 31, 2022).

Precipitation has been above normal in Manitoba. The average growing season rainfall for the prairies (April 1 – July 31, 2022) has been approximately 150% of normal. Total rainfall 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. Cumulative rainfall amounts have been near normal for the remainder of Saskatchewan and in Alberta (Fig. 6).

Figure 6. Growing season cumulative rainfall (mm) observed across the Canadian prairies for the period of April 1 to July 31, 2022.

Growing degree day (GDD) maps for the prairies can be accessed by 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, Jennifer Otani, Owen Olfert and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 13

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 31, 2022. Grasshopper development has progressed rapidly over the past few weeks and development rates are more advanced this year than expected based on long-term climate normal values. Based on estimates of average development, populations should consist of 4th (18%) and 5th (37%) instar nymphs and adults (33%) 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. 1). Model output indicates that oviposition (egg-laying) is now occurring across the southern prairies (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 31, 2022.
Figure 2. Percent of the migratory grasshopper (Melanoplus sanguinipes) predicted to be in the egg stage across the Canadian prairies as of July 31, 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, John Gavloski, James Tansey, Carter Peru, Shelley Barkley and Meghan Vankosky
Categories
Week 13

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 31, 2022, indicate that the third generation of non-migrant adults (based on mid-May arrival dates) is currently occurring across the southern prairies (Fig. 1). DBM development is predicted to be marginally greater this year than expected based on 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 31, 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 31, based on climate normal data.

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. 3) dislodged from the plant. Repeat this procedure at least in five locations in the field to get an accurate count.

Figure 3. 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).

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Figure 4. Diamondback moth pupa within silken cocoon.
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Figure 5. 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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Lygus bug monitoring

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 13

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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Aphids in field crops

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 13

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)
Soybean aphids and aphid annihilating allies (Insect of the Week; 2022 Wk07)
Syrphid flies (Insect of the Week; 2015 Wk16)

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Pre-Harvest Intervals (PHI)

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 13

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
Categories
Week 13

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 the August 3 issue as a PDF on their website. Bookmark their Crop Pest Update Index to readily access these reports and also bookmark their insect pest homepage to access fact sheets and more!
• Pests of greatest concern in Manitoba from July 28 to August 3 were armyworms, aphids and grasshoppers. The August 3 update has great information on scouting and monitoring for these pests!

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.

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 that Agri-News occasionally includes insect-related information. Twitter users can connect to #ABBugChat Wednesdays at 10:00 am MDT.

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Crop report links

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 13

Click the provincial name below to link to online crop reports produced by:
Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development
Saskatchewan Agriculture
Alberta Agriculture, Forestry, and Rural Economic Development

The following crop reports are also available:
• The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) produces a Crop Progress Report (link to August 1 report on right of the page)
• The USDA’s Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin

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Previous posts

Jennifer Otani
Categories
Week 13

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)
Field heroes (Wk08)
Field guides – New webpage to access (Wk02)
Flea beetles (Wk01; IOTW)
iNaturalist.ca (Wk02)
Invasive insect species – Early detection (Wk02)
Scouting charts – canola and flax (Wk03)
Ticks and Lyme disease (Wk02)
Wind trajectory reports released in 2

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Spotted Wing Drosophila

James Tansey and Cynthia Schock
Categories
Week 13

With the 2022 growing season well underway, we decided to feature an insect that is becoming a growing problem on the Canadian Prairies: Spotted Wing Drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii.

This invasive insect is thought to have originated in southeast Asia. The first record of SWD is from Japan in 1916. SWD is now established in small and stone fruit production areas throughout North America. SWD has been reported in British Columbia since 2009, and was first reported in Alberta in 2010. Occurrence in Alberta, and low levels in southern Manitoba in 2019 suggested that SK infestations were likely imminent. Monitoring for this pest conducted by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture began in 2019. Populations were detected throughout the province that year, spurring continued monitoring. Data from 2021 and 2022 indicate continued widespread distribution throughout the province. Early season detection of significant numbers suggests overwintering populations on the prairies.

SWD is an economic pest of many soft fruits, including raspberries, strawberries, cherries, blueberries and plums. Saskatoon berry has been documented as a host. Haskap is also considered to be susceptible but may escape major damage, as SWD populations typically do not increase until after harvest. However, Ontario haskap growers have seen economic losses when a mild winter is coupled with factors that lead to delayed ripening. SWD adults are 3-4 mm, yellow-brown with red eyes. Males have a conspicuous spot on the leading edge of each wing (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Spotted Wing Drosophila, male. Photo Credit: Encyclopedia of Life; Martin Cooper; University of Nebraska-Lincoln Dept. of Entomology

Females lack the spots but have a characteristic large, serrated ovipositor (Figure 2).

Figure 2. Spotted Wing Drosophila, female. Photo Credit: Encyclopedia of Life; Martin Cooper, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Dept. of Entomology

SWD overwinter as adults. These become active in the spring, mate and seek egg-laying sites. Female SWD lay as many as 16 eggs per day for up to two months. An average of 384 eggs are produced by each female. With their serrated ovipositor, female SWD deposit eggs under the skin of healthy, ripening fruit. Oviposition sites look like pin-holes in the skin (Figure 3). These can also serve as avenues of entry to pathogens like brown rot and botrytis.

Figure 3: SWD-damaged cherry showing oviposition scars. Photo Credit: Martin Hauser, California Department of Food and Agriculture

Several larvae can occur per fruit (Figure 4). Larval feeding causes fruit to become prematurely soft and unmarketable. Larvae mature in 3-13 days and pupate most commonly in the fruit. The pupal stage lasts another 3-15 days. Multiple generations per year are common.

Figure 4. SWD larva inside raspberry. Photo: Bugwood.org, Hannah Burrack

Although SWD adults can be moved around by winds, movement of contaminated plant material is the major route for initial dispersal. Current management includes culling and destruction of soft fruit and the application of insecticides to limit populations. There are several products registered to control SWD. These can be found here: http://pr-rp.hc-sc.gc.ca/ls-re/index-eng.php. Use the search term ‘spotted wing drosophila’. Product updates occur periodically so check this site regularly.

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