A surprising mid-season pest update

July 18, 2018

Some pests like it dry, some like it warm, and some need it windy to get where they want to go. And sometimes insect pests can surprise you and not nearly be as bad as anticipated.

That’s the story of the summer of 2018 — so far — according to Alberta Agriculture insect specialist, Scott Meers.

Shaun Haney caught up with Meers at an Alberta Canola Crop Walk hosted by Kevin Serfas in Turin, Alberta, to talk about what’s showing up in sweep nets, what farmers should be on the watch for in their canola fields, and what, if anything, is surprising for this season.

In this Canola School episode, Meers explains that cabbage seedpod weevil did reach threshold in some areas, however spraying was limited. The harsh winter may have pulled the numbers down. Dry weather can have an impact as well, but this is likely winter related, Meers says.

In regards to wind-borne diamondback moth, Meers says there just wan’t a big flight this year. That, combined with high numbers of parasitic species in sweeps, means that farmers don’t likely need to worry too much about this pest this year.

Perhaps the most surprising aspect of this year’s pest survey was that lygus — which typically sees a build up in dry years — has remained at a lower level than anticipated.

Canola School videos are produced by Real Agriculture.

You can watch all the canola school videos on this website and on Real Agriculture's Canola School page

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