“In the soybeans, there’s a lot of activity. We have velvet bean caterpillars, looper caterpillars, just a lot of caterpillars and a lot of stink bugs out there. There are a lot of bugs trying to eat. I’d just say that with prices the way they are, growers should be relatively aggressive in protection.”
Ron Smith, Extension Entomologist, Auburn University:
“We probably need to recognize that the season is winding down, but it’s also important to know we are a little later than normal and there’s potential for needing control in some areas for another three weeks. I really want to address the hurricane that came through, but I haven’t gotten enough feedback yet to know how it affected the cotton. We will definitely have a better picture of that by next week.
“As far as the cotton, there is still a lot of young fruit left. I don’t even know if we will have time to mature it. If the cotton was planted in the normal window, the yield potential looks really good. I’m just hoping the storm didn’t mess that up, and I hope there isn’t another one coming soon. There’s lots of young fruit still left.
“The insect that we need to keep watching for is the stink bug. We’re almost to the end of the time where a bloom can make a boll, and bolls need to be protected for about 25 days. So, we still have about three weeks left in some cotton to protect against stink bugs. There are definitely some stink bugs still in these fields, so we need to pay attention. I’d say we’ve done a good job in this area of controlling them, but this later cotton just still needs protection.
“The only other pest out there is spider mites. Even with all of this rain, we still have pockets of spider mites in some fields. They are so intense they’re causing defoliation in those areas. I just don’t know that we’d be justified to spray for them. The damage is already done, and there aren’t enough still there to really need the spray.