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Damage occurs when weed hosts are destroyed and BCW larvae begin feeding on corn because it is the only food source available. For fields that are high risk for BCW damage, identification and scouting are key for proper management.
Due to the high market price of corn and fluctuations in inputs, Iowa State University has a dynamic action threshold. The action threshold calculation determines when it is economical to treat for BCW based on plant population, expected yield, anticipated market value, and the cost of control:
Corn clipped below ground is more likely to die. If corn is clipped above ground, it may survive, but it has a higher risk for disease infection. Wet soils often favor above-ground clipping. Once corn is at the V5 or V6 growth stage, it is less susceptible to BCW damage.
Starting with a clean seed bed is also a good management option for BCW. BCW larvae cannot survive if weeds are tilled or treated with a herbicide 2-3 weeks before corn emergence. Applying a pre-plant a Roundup® agricultural herbicide can help keep the seed bed clean. Additionally, a fall application of a Roundup® agricultural herbicide tank mixed with 2-4,D can be an effective way to manage winter annual weeds. Fall herbicide applications can be more effective than spring applications in controlling winter annual weeds such as common chickweed and purple deadnettle.
Preventative insecticides may be another management option, although many extension offices question their worth due to the sporadic nature of BCW. However, an insecticide rescue treatment is recommended when thresholds are met (Table 1). Follow label directions and make sure that insecticide treatments comply with insect resistance management requirements.
Sources: 1 A. Sisson, et al. May 5, 2011. Black Cutworm Scouting Advisory 2011. Iowa State University Extension. Integrated Crop Management News 2W. Bailey. April 13, 2011. First Intensive Captures of Black Cutworm Moths. University of Missouri. Volume 21, No. 6 3R.J. Wright, et al. 2007. Corn Cutworms. University of Nebraska– Lincoln. Neb Guide. Pub no. G1153; 4R. B. Hammond, A. Michel, and J. B. Eisley. 2009. Black Cutworm on Corn. Ohio State University Extension. Fact Sheet Agriculture and Natural Resources. Publication no. FC-ENT-0035-09 Additional references used in developing publication: C. Krupke and J. Obermeyer. April 29, 2011. Purdue Cooperative Extension Service. Pest and Crop Issue 4; K.A. Cook e al. 2004. Black Cutworm Agrotis ipsilon. University of Illinois Extension. Integrated Pest Management; University of Missouri. March 2011. IPM Pest Monitoring Network; M.L. Boyd and W. Bailey. April 2002. Black cutworm in Missouri. University of Extension. Publication G7112; A. Sisson, L. Jesse, and E. Hodgson. 2010. Black cutworm scouting advisory 2010. Iowa State University; M. Rice and R. Pope. May 7,2001. Early cutworm scouting for southern Iowa (IC-486(8)). Iowa State University; K. Cook, et. al. 2004. Black cutworm. University of Illinois; University of Missouri. 2010. 2010 Missouri black cutworm intensive capture counts. MU IPM Pest Monitoring Network. Monsanto Company is a member of Excellence Through Stewardship® (ETS). Monsanto products are commercialized in accordance with ETS Product Launch Stewardship Guidance, and in compliance with Monsanto’s Policy for Commercialization of Biotechnology-Derived Plant Products in Commodity Crops. This product has been approved for import into key export markets with functioning regulatory systems. Any crop or material produced from this product can only be exported to, or used, processed or sold in countries where all necessary regulatory approvals have been granted. It is a violation of national and international law to move material containing biotech traits across boundaries into nations where import is not permitted. Growers should talk to their grain handler or product purchaser to confirm their buying position for this product. Excellence Through Stewardship® is a registered trademark of Biotechnology Industry Organization. B.t. products may not yet be registered in all states. Check with your Monsanto representative for the registration status in your state. Roundup Technology® includes Monsanto's glyphosate-based herbicide technologies. Individual results may vary, and performance may vary from location to location and from year to year. This result may not be an indicator of results you may obtain as local growing, soil and weather conditions may vary. Growers should evaluate data from multiple locations and years whenever possible. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Roundup Ready® crops contain genes that confer tolerance to glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup® brand agricultural herbicides. Roundup® brand agricultural herbicides will kill crops that are not tolerant to glyphosate. Acceleron®, Genuity®, Roundup Ready 2 Technology and Design®, Roundup Ready®, Roundup Technology®, Roundup®, and SmartStax® are trademarks of Monsanto Technology LLC. Leaf Design℠ is a servicemark of Monsanto Company. LibertyLink® and the Water Droplet Design® are registered trademarks of Bayer. Herculex® is a registered trademark of Dow AgroSciences LLC. Respect the Refuge and Corn Design® and Respect the Refuge® are registered trademarks of National Corn Growers Association. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. ©2012 Monsanto Company. SEK05.13.2010; AMB051011, AMB060412