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The points of contact between Rutgers Cooperative Extension Service and the grower & business communities are the NJ County Agricultural Agents. The agents are a tremendous source of information for both new and experienced growers.
Visit your local county extension office.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Black Cutworms

As we move into corn planting I want to remind everyone about black cutworm damage. We had a few corn fields in the state that experienced considerable damage last year. Loss of corn plants from above ground cutting or below ground tunneling injury is an indicator of black cutworm. Adult black cut worm moths over winter in the south and migrate north with spring weather fronts. The migrating moths seem to be attracted to fields with significant winter annual weed coverage such as chickweed. Increased populations of winter annuals are often found in reduced and no-till fields, so black cutworm tends to be more of a problem in these fields. Rescue treatments are based on the number of plants effected, corn growth stage, and size of the cutworm. Control recommendations can be found in  EB-237 Mid-Atlantic Pest Management Recommendations for Field Crops

Black Cutworm Larva
(Photo courtesy of University of Illinois Extension IPM Program)

Bill Bamka