Skip to main content
link to field crops section
->Home > fieldcrops > tag > pestrpt > pestrpt12

Weekly Field Crops Pest Report 2012

September 28, 2012, Volume 11 Number 24

  1. View from the Field
  2. Weather Outlook
  3. Resistant Varieties – "built in" insurance benefits
  4. Clipboard Checklist
  5. Contact Information

View from the Field

return to top

Bears in Corn! That’s a new one for the pest report. Reports are in of bears damaging corn in northern New York. Hungry bears eat the whole ear and knock down a lot of stalks. Some suggest that they prefer the milk stage of corn development. I wish they had gotten a picture!

For more on black bears as pests, see Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management: Black Bears.

While scouting Tom Kilcer’s triticale plots I found rust on lower leaves of most plants in a fertilizer trial. I collected some samples and Gay Bergstrom will identify which rust it is.

Rust on Triticale

Rust normally does not overwinter in NY. Spores travel on weather fronts from the south and southwest. Some triticale varieties have some resistance to several of the rusts that attack them.  More information coming after we identify it.

Reports of northern corn leaf blight and gray leaf spot in field corn are still coming in. Last week we also found anthracnose leaf blight on field corn in Dutchess County. Anthracnose is rather common in the Hudson Valley and can cause anthracnose leaf blight or stalk rot. The fungus is Colletotrichum graminicola. Leaf lesions are 1/4 to 1/2 in., oval to elongate, and begin as water-soaked spots that turn tan in the center; they may or may not have a distinct border. Small black specks (acervuli) are present in the lesions in humid weather. Wet, humid, warm conditions cause the disease to proliferate. Anthracnose overwinters on corn residue from the previous year, especially when corn follows corn and the residue stays on the surface (low and no-till).  Crop loss can occur if blighting occurs within 3 week of silking. Spores on blighted leaves serve as inoculum for stalk infections.
Management Alternatives:

  1. Use resistant hybrids for anthracnose
  2. Short crop rotations to reduce the buildup of anthracnose in the field
  3. Clean plow-down of crop residues and bury a lot of the inoculum.

For photos of the blight please refer to Anthracnose Leaf Blight and Stalk Rot of Corn.

Weather Outlook

September 27, 2012
Drew Montreuil, NOAA Northeast Regional Climate Center, Cornell University

return to top

Last week, temperatures were 3-6 degrees below normal for most of the state. Parts of eastern and northern New York were closer to normal, but still below average. Precipitation was highest over the Catskills, where over 3" fell. Most other areas got 1-3" with a few localized areas seeing less than an inch. Base 50 Growing Degree Days were less than 50 statewide except for Long Island, which saw 75-100.

A storm system will bring an area of rain today, with the core of the rain roughly passing from the Southern Tier into eastern New York. Highs should mostly be in the 60s. Overnight lows should be mainly in the 40s, though some 30s may be possible across southwest New York. Frost is not expected.

A few showers will be possible on Saturday, but most areas will see little to no rain. High temperatures will be in the low to upper 60. Overnight lows will again mainly be in the 40s with a few isolated spots dipping into the 30s.

There’s a higher chance for rain on Sunday, especially across western and southern New York. High temperatures will be in the 60s for most, though areas in the rain may stay in the 50s. Low temperatures will stay in the mid to upper 40s.

A few left over showers will be possible on Monday, with dry weather Tuesday and Wednesday. High temperatures will be in the low to mid 60s Monday, but should warm into the upper 60s Tuesday and 70s by Wednesday. Overnight lows should generally be in the 40s all three days.

Overall, through the next week, the chance of frost appears low.

The 5 day precipitation totals will generally be less than ½” across western and northern New York. Areas across southeast New York could see a couple of inches of rain. The 8-14 Day outlook calls for near to below normal temperatures with above normal precipitation.

National Weather Service Climate Prediction Service Maps of 8-14 day outlooks

National Weather Service Eastern Region Headquarters watch/warnings map

NRCC Drought Page which features the US Drought Monitor map (updated every Thursday)

Resistant Varieties – "built in" insurance benefits

Keith Waldron

return to top

As the growing season draws to a close, why not update and review crop records and field histories to document issues of concern? What insects, diseases, weeds and some vertebrate pests gave us problems this past year? For many pests, a mix of management options are available to lessen, and in some cases totally avoid, their impacts. It’s not too early to begin thinking using lessons learned this year to think about steps to take to improve our crop management next year. Correct pest identification is a cornerstone of IPM and serves as key component for management decisions such as choosing pest resistant varieties, crop rotation or other action.  

Lately a number of crop diseases are showing up – not all serious but certainly notable. Gary Bergstrom and Jaimie Cummings, Cornell’s field crop plant pathologists, have been working with Extension educators and others across the state to diagnose a number of soybean and corn disease samples that has come in the last several weeks. The most common diseases of corn this season include northern corn leaf blight, gray leaf spot, and common rust. Less common have been northern corn leaf spot, eyespot, anthracnose leaf blight, ear rots and gibberella stalk rot. For soybeans: downy mildew, soybean vein necrosis virus, Septoria leaf blight, brown spot, Cercospora leaf blight, bacterial blight and white mold. Descriptions of the common diseases have been the subject of several articles in recent Weekly Pest Report issues. Some of these same diseases could affect crops on your farm. 

If your farm has had a history of these diseases be sure to check seed catalogs to see if disease-resistant or disease-tolerant varieties are available. If so, it makes “$ense” to have this important pest management benefit already built in to the seed you purchase. While checking out the seed labels for disease resistance, also consider varieties resistant to other pests such as potato leafhopper resistant alfalfa, soybean aphid resistant soybeans, insect-resistant corn varieties, and other pests. An ounce of prevention…

Clipboard Checklist

Keith Waldron

return to top

* Emergency contact information ("911", local hospital, Chem. Spill emergency contact, other) posted in central posting area
* Maintain crop records by field, including variety, planting date, pesticides used, nutrient inputs including manure, etc.
* Watch for any patches of herbicide resistant weeds, weed escapes

* Monitor fields for plant vigor, growth stage, late season pest issues (European corn borer, foliar diseases, stalk rots, ear molds, nutritional deficiencies, vertebrate damage)
* Monitor for weeds, note presence of "who", "how many" and "where"
* Monitor reproductive stage corn fields for foliar diseases, lodging issues, corn ear damage (insect pests and ear molds and other diseases)
* Prepare storage areas to accept upcoming harvest

Alfalfa & Hay:
* Monitor alfalfa seedings for weeds, insects & diseases.
* Check regrowth of established alfalfa stands for potato leafhopper, weed and disease problems.
* Storage areas cleaned and ready to accept incoming harvest

* Monitor fields for diseases such as white mold; natural enemies and weed escapes

Dairy Livestock Barn Fly Management:
Barn fly issues tend to spike when fall temperatures drop and flies seek warmer locations. To avoid establishment of fly populations pay close attention to barn sanitation and other cultural practices to minimize fly breeding habitat.
* Sanitation, sanitation, sanitation - clean animal resting areas, feed throughs, minimize source of moist organic matter i.e. fly breeding areas in barn and in adjacent animal loafing yard
* Check water sources, drainage, roof gutters for leaks and potential overspill
* Continue fly monitoring: install "3X5" index card fly speck monitoring cards throughout barn
* Install/refresh/replenish as needed: fly tapes, insecticide baits, natural enemies (parasitoids)

Dairy Livestock Pasture Fly Management:
Pasture fly issues tend to drop significantly when fall temperatures drop, particularly after the first frosts. House, stable and perhaps some horn flies will seek warmer locations such as barns.
* Monitor animals for presence of pasture fly pests. Treatment guidelines: Horn flies (50 per dairy animal side, 100 per side for beef cattle), face flies(10 per animal face), stable flies (10 per 4 legs). See IPM's Livestock page.
* Consider installing biting fly traps to reduce horse, deer and stable fly populations.

* Check temperature, moisture, pest status of bin stored small grains
* Keep areas around storage bins and silos clean and mowed
* Check areas around storage bins and silos for vertebrate tunneling
* Check temperature of recently baled hay in hay mow
* Clean grain bins target for use in storing upcoming soybean or corn harvests

* Note any repairs needed for recently used equipment: tractors, tillage implements, planters, sprayers, etc. as they are cleaned and serviced.
* Service hay harvesting equipment as needed.
* Calibrate manure spreaders - maintain records on amount spread per field

Emergency responder information on pesticide spills and accidents…
CHEMTREC - 800-424-9300

For pesticide information
National Pesticide Information Center: 800-858-7378

To Report Oil and Hazardous Material Spills in New York State
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Spill Response - 800-457-7362 (in NYS), 518-457-7362 (outside NYS)

Poison Control Centers
Poison Control Centers nationwide -  800-222-1222

If you are unable to reach a Poison Control Center or obtain the information your doctor needs, the office of the NYS Pesticide Coordinator at Cornell University, 607-255-1866, may be able to assist you in obtaining such information.

Contact Information

return to top

Keith Waldron: NYS Livestock and Field Crops IPM Coordinator
Phone: (315) 787 - 2432
Fax: (315) 787-2360

Ken Wise: Eastern NYS IPM Area Educator: Field Crops and Livestock
Phone: (518) 434-1690
Fax: (518) 426-3316