Bayer is promoting awareness around corn rootworm with “The Watch.”
“The Watch is really a program to make growers aware of different options that you can use to manage it,” said Jody Gander, technology development manager with corn traits. “Corn rootworm is called the billion dollar pest because it’s estimated that between cost of control and lost yield, corn rootworm can cost growers over a billion dollars a year. There’s a number of different options – crop rotation, soil applied insecticides, traited pyramid products, and scouting. That’s where The Watch comes in.”
Gander said typically adult beetles will lay eggs that will overwinter in the soil and hatch into larvae the following spring. They will then will move to corn roots and cause feeding damage, which reduces ability of plant to uptake water and nutrients which can lower the yield and compromise the stand, as well.
This year’s campaign provided growers with yellow sticky cards they would place in their crop to monitor activity. Adult rootworm beetles would stick to those and growers would count and find the average to indicate if there might be corn rootworm issues in that field the following year. More information is available at www.genuity.com/thewatch.