Early-season soybean pests could be a challenge
As the entomologists note, overwintering adults are strongly attracted to soybeans and will move into fields with newly emerged soybean plants, but they will feed on other hosts waiting for the soybeans.
According to the specialists, scouting for the pest isn’t the easiest. “Bean leaf beetle is easily disturbed and will drop from plants and seek shelter in soil cracks and under debris. Sampling early in the season requires you to be sneaky to estimate actual densities. Although overwintering beetles rarely cause economic damage, their presence may be an indicator of building first and second generations later in the season.”
Those first and second generation bean leaf beetle, soybean aphid, spider mites and Japanese beetles that have had a jump on emerging ahead of the crop could easily build from early-season to late-season levels.
Dave Rummel, MANA insecticide brand leader, said, “Ag retailers and crop consultants need to be recommending something that has knockdown ability for heavy insect pressure but also has residual effect or systemic control to help farmers get through the season. I think it is going to be an interestingly challenging year.”
He added, “Looking down the road, a residual or systemic product that has contact chemistry, too, is going to be very important because the grower needs to spray to knock down what is present and have systemic control in the plant so that as insect pressure rebuilds or new species of insects appear there is systemic control in the leaves.”