Many different species of insect pests attack crops. Each of these pests is capable of causing economic yield loss, and some are capable of totally destroying a crop. Knowing when to treat for insect pests in crops is vital to keeping yields high and controlling the costs of agricultural production.
Control insects in cotton, soybeans, corn, grain sorghum, wheat, sweet potatoes, rice, peanuts, and pastures with the following information produced by MSU Extension.
Virtual Insect Scout School for Agronomic Crops
The tarnished plant bug is Mississippi’s No. 1 most economically damaging insect in cotton, costing an estimated $42 million in yield losses plus millions more spent to control the pest.
When managing insects and diseases in row crops, growers typically act after a problem appears, but there are no reactive treatments for some pests, including soil insects that attack seeds and developing seedlings.
Management such as seed treatments or in-furrow insecticides for these pests has to be applied at the time of planting. Mississippi State University researchers say seed treatments make good sense for many crops.
If you’re a homeowner who loves your bermudagrass lawn, be on the lookout for fall armyworms. These caterpillars can eat voraciously, devouring yards within just a day or two. These pests show up every year from late summer to early fall, and you never know exactly when or how many there will be.
Mississippi pastures, hay fields and lawns are threatened annually by fall armyworms, and close observation and quick action are the only ways to successfully battle the pests again this year. Keith Whitehead works in Franklin County with the Mississippi State University Extension Service. He said no one knows each year how bad the fall armyworm problem will be or when the insects will show up.
STONEVILLE, Miss. -- Tucker Miller has a list of row crop producers who depend on him to manage insects in their fields, and every year brings a different pest challenge that threatens crop profitability.
Miller, an independent crop consultant with Miller Entomological Service Inc. in Drew, Mississippi, said there is always uncertainty in insect matters.
“We try to be on top of the situation by scouting and looking for the insects that usually appear at certain times of the crop growth stage,” Miller said.
When Mississippi achieved statehood in 1817, its cotton industry was only beginning to take off. By 1917, boll weevils were devastating the state’s cotton crop and its economy.