As anticipated, soybean aphids were at extremely low levels in 2012; indeed, most growers saw no aphids at all.

Ron Hammond and Andy Michel, Ohio State University, have been sampling buckthorn in the fall of 2012 to determine the overwintering levels of the soybean aphid. These observations are to determine if they can make a prediction as to the potential for problems in 2013.

Normally in late summer of a low aphid year we would expect an increase in aphid numbers and a move to buckthorn in the fall. However, they have seen no soybean aphids, either individuals or eggs, on any of the buckthorn that they have sampled throughout the state. The lack of aphids is also the norm across the Midwest. 

Thus, at this time, they are holding off any predictions for this coming summer although the possibility exists that next year might break the two-year low/high aphid cycle. Growers should plan on monitoring the situation closely next year, and read the C.O.R.N. newsletter for details.