Author Archives: Melina Miles

Fall armyworm infestations through January and February the most severe we’ve seen

Maize and sorghum crops across Queensland are experiencing extreme fall armyworm (FAW) pressure. In Central Queensland in particular, sorghum planted in the typical planting window has been heavily impacted by the very high FAW pressure. Persistent, high-density infestations pose a risk to crops from emergence through to grain fill. In an unwelcome development not observed in previous seasons, large FAW… Read more »

Managing FAW in sorghum – is there a threshold yet?

Late sorghum is susceptible to FAW damage, and potential yield loss, in the vegetative stage. This article discusses how the yield loss happens and how to determine if your crop is at risk. The information below was generated from both sorghum trials being undertaken at the Gatton research station funded by the Queensland Government and GRDC in collaboration with QAAFI… Read more »

Changes to the FAW permit for emamectin

      Comments Off on Changes to the FAW permit for emamectin

If you are managing fall armyworm (FAW) in maize, you may have noticed that the permit for Affirm® (emamectin benzoate) (PER93226) had disappeared from the APVMA permits portal. PER93226 was temporarily suspended whilst clarification was sought around withholding period (WHP) and use patterns. While PER93226 is now back on the APVMA permits list, it is important to note it has… Read more »

Fall armyworm situation report for late spring

      Comments Off on Fall armyworm situation report for late spring

Fall armyworm (FAW) moth catches have increased significantly in some regions over the past few weeks (see trapping counts below). It is unclear whether this increase in trap catches is indicative of migration events (perhaps associated with the recent storm activity) or increasing night temperatures that allow for greater movement of moths that may have emerged locally. Very low densities… Read more »

Helicoverpa armigera outbreak in wheat and barley

Many regions in Qld and northern NSW are still experiencing an outbreak of Helicoverpa armigera in wheat. Before the last significant outbreak occurred in 2016, it had been many years since anyone had seen such an event, and while there was a smaller outbreak in 2020, it was not on the scale or severity of this year. In many crops… Read more »

The fields are alive…with the sound of chewing

      Comments Off on The fields are alive…with the sound of chewing

Spring has sprung, and as is typical following a wetter winter, insects are abundant in crops. There are native armyworms in winter cereals from Central Queensland to northern NSW. Aphids are abundant in winter cereals, canola and faba beans. Key drivers of pest abundance in wetter seasons are the increased availability of plant hosts over winter and into spring and… Read more »

Detecting FAW in sorghum and corn

      1 Comment on Detecting FAW in sorghum and corn

Fall armyworm (FAW) are still active across the Northern Grains Region, but inland Central and Southern Queensland have not experienced continuous population build up in crops since the first immigration of moths in September–October. One of the major contributors to this continuing low pressure is probably the very high natural enemy (beneficial) impact on FAW. A number of very common… Read more »

Helicoverpa in wheat – does it warrant control?

Helicoverpa outbreaks in wheat are relatively rare events. The last big outbreak, in 2016, was the first significant event for several decades, so treating helicoverpa in wheat is not something that many agronomists are familiar with. However, 2020 looks to be a year when helicoverpa infestations in some crops may warrant control. Wet winters are well correlated with outbreaks of… Read more »

Termites in cereal crops—a rare occurrence—but it is 2020….

Termites are common in undisturbed parts of the landscape, playing an important role in the ecosystem. It is unusual to find them in crops—but in 2020, there have been several reports of termites in winter cereals. The first reports were received during crop establishment, and more were received once the crops started to come out in head and set grain…. Read more »

Beet webworm moths visit mungbean crops

      1 Comment on Beet webworm moths visit mungbean crops

Beet webworm (Spoladea recurvalis) moths are being seen in huge numbers in mungbean crops at present. The moths are brown with white bands across the wings, and rest with their wings swept back. Those familiar with bean podborer (Maruca vitrata) will see the similarities between the two moths – both small brown moths that move readily when disturbed. At rest,… Read more »