What’s the deal with pest resistance?
Pests – insects, disease and weeds -- are a regular part of life. For large areas, our pest removal practices have included spraying safe pesticides or relying on plant genetics to manage them. But many pests can reproduce quickly and often, allowing them to evolve and develop tolerance to some of our easiest, cheapest and most effective management tools. Some pests are completely tolerant to some pesticides. When this occurs, it is called pest resistance, because they can now resist and survive a specific management tactic that previously controlled them.
Pest resistance is a natural process. However, when it comes to something as valuable as our food and when there’s no easy way to fight a pest, it can lead to yield reductions and increasing costs. Farmers, landowners, scientists, private businesses, and groups of individuals are finding ways to preserve our management tools, prevent pest resistance, and develop management strategies for already resistant pests.
We will have a fair amount of corn tasseling shortly after the weekend – so fungicide application season is about here.
In talking with farmers and retailers the last week or so, based on all the rainfall and wet soils this is shaping up to be a big year for fungicide applications, so just a few thoughts for guys “on the fence” and trying to decide whether to spray or not.
DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Associate Dean John Lawrence and Iowa farmer Larry Buss of Logan today announced the release of the Iowa Pest Resistance Management Plan. A video of the announcement is available here.
Version 1 of the IPRMP is an Iowa-specific plan that seeks to engage farmers on the issue of pest resistance management with the goal of keeping technology and tools such as pesticides, seed treatments and biotechnology products and native traits available and effective.
We continue to receive several questions about Northern corn leaf blight, Goss’s wilt and fungicides. Here is some additional information.
Basics of fungicides
Parts of rural Iowa are abuzz about fungicide use to manage some emerging diseases, and we have received several questions about the basics of fungicides. A quick reminder, APS PRESS recently published a book geared towards farmers and agronomists on the basics of fungicides.
Fungicide use in corn production in the United States was a rare practice for much of its history as a commercial grain. Only recently has fungicide increased rapidly, specifically between 2000 and 2010. While the use of fungicide on the crop grew exponentially, plant pathologists did not record an increase in fungal foliar disease pressure in corn.
Day 2 of the #ICM30 Conference has wrapped up and while we feel great about the sessions we were able to get to today, there were plenty out there that we were not able to get to that had just as helpful information. Make sure to get on Twitter and search for the #ICM30 to get all of the updates from various presentations today.
Here is a round-up of several sessions today in relation to Integrated Pest Management:
Insect Resistance to Bt