It’s spring, so it’s cutworm season. This week’s insect is the darksided cutworm. Mature larvae are hairless, greyish with a prominent white stripe on either side just above their legs. It is a climbing cutworm with feeding occurring at night. They have a broad host range including cereals, canola, corn, flax, sunflower, vegetables berry and tree fruits.
Find out more about the darksided cutworm at the Insect of the Week page. Other important species include dingy, army, redbacked and pale western cutworms (See Insect of the Week: 2017 – May 1, 8, 15 and 29).
Photocredit John Gavloski, Manitoba Ministry of Agriculture
In addition, Cutworm Pests of Crops on the Canadian Prairies – Identification and Management Field Guide was recently published (2017). This new handy manual has chapters on general biology, history of outbreaks, scouting techniques, natural enemies and general control options. The meat of the manual is descriptions of 24 cutworm species, their lifecycle, hosts, damage, monitoring and economic thresholds. To download a copy, go to the Cutworm Field Guide page.