Insect pests in field crops
Don't let insects bug you
With spring well and truly in the air, many farmers are wading through crops assessing their insect pressure.
It is important when checking your crops to not only have a good understanding of how to identify insect pests, but also how to identify the beneficial insects that are present in the crop working hard on your behalf.
In addition an understanding is needed of monitoring techniques and economic thresholds to make an informed decision on whether to control an insect pest outbreak.
Many of the traditional insecticides used are extremely toxic to both the insect pest but also the good beneficial insects.
So make sure you are targeting the insect pest only with your product selection so that beneficial insects are maintained to help with subsequent pest outbreaks.
There are many great resources available to assist you in identifying pest and beneficial insects in field crops:
- The Back Pocket Guides for crop mites (GRDC)
- The Back Pocket Guides for Beneficial Insects (GRDC)
- Crop Insects: The Ute Guide, Northern Grains Belt Edition (GRDC).
Also, go online to access lots more information:
- The Beatsheet YouTube channel - has great visual how-to's for field crop monitoring and research
- Integrated Pest Management (IPM) guidelines for grain - is a super site with great selection of tools and strategies to help you make more informed decisions around insect pests in your crop.
- The CESAR website - has a great visual library of insects and the latest information of pest outbreak
- For more information on the chemical control options download a copy of the NSW DPI Insect & Mite Control in Field Crops Guide online or drop in to your local LLS office to grab a hardcopy.
If in doubt, give us a shout. Call your local Central West Local Land Services Ag Advisory staff.