Tobacco Insect Scouting Report. July 3, 2014

— Written By tcmclamb and last updated by

We are in our tenth week of scouting, and tobacco budworms are still active at most sites. Although, fewer sites exceed thresholds. Some fields are starting to flower, and these flowers are particularly attractive to budworm moths. Moths will preferentially lay eggs on flower buds or flowers, and larvae hatching from these eggs rarely move down the plant to feed on leaves. Therefore, we generally do not recommend treating fields for tobacco budworm which are within 1 to 2 weeks of topping.

Within the next couple of weeks, some sites are going to begin topping which will reduce the impact of the budworms. Tomato spotted wilt virus incidence remains well below 10%, the level at which economic loss may occur.

Scouting Report, Eastern 1 – Grower Standard Field

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infested plants Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed?
0 – No treatment
 0 beetles/plant – No treatment
12% tobacco budworm budworm infested plants – Treatment Not Recommended**
0 – No treatment
0 – No treatment
None observed

Scouting Report, Eastern 2 – IPM Field

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm  infested plants Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed?
0 – No Treatment
0 beetles/plant – No treatment
10% tobacco budworm infested plants  – Treatment Not Recommended
0 hornworms/plant – No treatment
0 – No Treatment
None Observed 

**Although the tobacco budworm infestation is over threshold, treatment is not recommended due to the likelihood of topping within the next week. Budworms larvae are relatively small and closest to flowers, which will be removed during topping.

Scouting Report , Eastern 3 – Grower Standard Field

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infested plants Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed?
0 – No treatment
 0 beetles/plant – No treatment
11% tobacco budworm budworm infested plants – Treatment Recommended
0 – No treatment
0 – No treatment
0.025 stink bugs per plant
0.025 Japanese beetles per plant

Scouting Report, Eastern 4 – IPM Field

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm  infested plants Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed?
0 – No Treatment
0 beetles/plant – No treatment
8% tobacco budworm infested plants – No treatment 
0 hornworms/plant – No treatment
0 – No Treatment
0.025 Japanese beetles per plant 

Scouting Report Piedmont 1 – Grower Standard Field

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infested plants Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed?
0 – No treatment
 0 – No treatment
30% tobacco budworm infested plants – Treatment Recommended
0 – No treatment
0 – No treatment
0.025 stink bugs per plant

Scouting Report, Piedmont 2 – IPM Field

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm  infested plants Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed?
0 – No Treatment
0 – No treatment
50% tobacco budworm infested plants – Treatment Recommended
0 – No treatment
0 – No Treatment
None observed 

Here are the scouting reports from the control plots for our experiments at the Upper Coastal Plain Research Station near Rocky Mount, NC and the Lower Coastal Plain Research Station near Kinston, NC.  For some of these experiments, the control plots receive no insecticide treatments for the entire season.  For some of the experiments, we are interested in only caterpillar pests so all plants in the experiment, including the control plots, are treated in the greenhouse with imidacloprid to prevent other early season pests.

On Station, Kinston – Control plants with no insecticide treatment

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infestation Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed? 7% aphid infested plants – No Treatment 0 beetles/plant – No treatment 51% budworm infested plants – No treatment** 0 – No treatment 0 – No Treatment 5% of plants infected with Tomato spotted wilt virus

On Station, Kinston – Control plants treated with imidacloprid

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infestation Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed? 0 – No Treatment 0 beetles/plant – No treatment 56% budworm infested plants – No treatment** 0 – No treatment 0 – No Treatment 5% of plants infected with TSWV

On Station, Rocky Mount – Control plants with no insecticide treatment

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infestation Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed? 0 – No Treatment 0 beetles/plant – No treatment 9% budworm infested plants – No treatment 0% Hornworm infested plants – No treatment 0 – No Treatment 1% of plants infected with TSWV

On Station, Rocky Mount – Control plants treated with imidacloprid

Insect observation No. aphid infested plants Flea beetles/plant Percent tobacco budworm infestation Hornworms/plant Percent cutworm damaged plants Other insects
Treatment needed? 0 – No Treatment 0 – No treatment 9% budworm infested plants – No treatment 0 – No treatment 0 – No Treatment 1% of plants infected with TSWV

** Plots were not treated due to ongoing experiments, but experimental plots with similar amounts of budworm infestation, were treated. 

More Information

You can find last weeks scouting report here. To learn more about the Integrated Pest Management project, refer to our first scouting report, here.

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