Agronomists with University of Missouri Extension have formed a network to detect the appearance of Asian soybean rust in the state this year.

Specialists in 22 counties across the state will scout soybean fields, starting when the crop emerges from the ground, said Bill Wiebold, MU soybean specialist.

Missouri reports will be fed into a national network maintained by USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Growers can see the results posted on the Internet at

Rust outbreak reports also will be sent by e-mail to all county extension centers. "Local offices will have the news as soon as we know it," Wiebold said. MU Extension also will send rust reports to the media to alert growers.

Agronomists are working with cooperating growers who planted their soybean crop early, said Wiebold. Specialists will scout specific fields weekly until reports of outbreaks in adjoining states begin to appear. Those soybean fields are located from the Bootheel in the southeast to Holt County, north of St. Joseph, Mo.

"We expect to receive advance warning from states to the south," Wiebold said. "Then we'll switch to a three-times-per-week schedule as risk increases."

MU specialists attended training last winter in scouting and identification.

Source: University Release