Scouting corn for Aspergillus ear rot
UK doesn’t offer a routine testing service for aflatoxin, but there are numerous laboratories that are equipped to analyze corn samples. A list of laboratories is available at http://www.ca.uky.edu/agcollege/plantpathology/ext_files/PPFShtml/PPFS-MISC-1.pdf. This is an incomplete list; other competent labs exist, but this will serve as a handy reference of some of the available laboratories.
This is a really important point: If you properly collect 10 samples from a moving stream of grain (see ID-59), aflatoxin quantity will vary quite a bit among those 10 samples. That is the nature of sampling for a chemical present at parts-per-billion levels. This variability will be even worse if you are submitted ears collected while scouting. Look at Table 1 in ID-59 (http://www.ca.uky.edu/agc/pubs/id/id59/id59.pdf.) to understand just how variable sampling for aflatoxin can be, even when done according to best practices.
As far as to do with the information from scouting, see ID-59 for helpful ideas.
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