And two, they will begin to invade soybean fields as soon as the crop starts flowering.

Most alarming is the report and image I received (May 22) from Jim Oliver (Monsanto) that shows a volunteer soybean plant from the South Boston area covered with KB nymphs.

This is the first record of a heavy nymphal infestation on soybeans in Virginia. The nymphs are congregating on some of the 8-10 inch tall volunteer soybeans, but not (yet) on the newly planted beans in that field that are about 3 inches tall.

 

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My advice was to wait to see if they move to the planted crop before making a control decision.

Fortunately, we do not have to reinvent the wheel in terms of management recommendations: Just stick with what has been developed in Georgia and South Carolina where they have had a couple of years of experience and research.

First, infestations are most likely to be encountered in the earliest planted, full season, earliest maturity group soybean fields as those will be the first to flower.

Second, the threshold is based on numbers of nymphs, NOT adult activity. Basically, we need to key on the nymphal stage of this insect in soybeans.

Fields should be treated when the average reaches one nymph per sweep net sweep or if nymphs are easily found on stems, leaf petioles or leaves.

Because there are only two complete generations per year, we should be able to control the nymphs for each generation and control population development.

Third, there are several good insecticide options for controlling KB. We will provide more detail on these in future Advisories. These recommendations as well as good images of the different insect stages (egg, nymph, adult) are located in a kudzu bug field guide produced by Clemson University, University of Georgia and the United Soybean Board available online at: http://digital.turn-page.com/i/87846.

Our advice: Begin checking any soybean fields where plants have emerged, especially if you are located in the south central part of the state.

 

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