Plant parasitic nematodes exist to some extent in every field, with injury ranging from none visible to severe with tremendous yield loss.

In soybean, the soybean cyst nematode is well known and receiving a lot of attention in Nebraska as we monitor its spread to new areas.

In contrast, nematodes feeding on corn roots already occur in every field. These are usually referred to as corn nematodes, although some may feed on other hosts as well. There are many species of corn nematodes from at least 12 genera with common names such as sting, needle, lance, lesion, stunt, dagger, spiral, etc.

The level of crop injury and yield loss depends on which species are present and their population levels. The only way to determine that is by collecting and submitting samples to a laboratory for plant parasitic nematode analysis.

Unfortunately, strict guidelines for collecting samples for plant parasitic nematode analysis in corn have not been established, but there are some tips (see full article) for collecting samples. Now through the next couple of weeks may be the best time to sample for nematodes in corn.

SOURCE: University of Nebraska.