Purdue University reports that potato leafhopper populations in alfalfa fields have been rising throughout Indiana. High numbers of leafhoppers have been coming to lights at night. Purdue entomologists say the extended hot and dry conditions have contributed to this population explosion. Producers are encouraged to inspect new growth soon after cutting because this is when alfalfa is most susceptible to leafhopper feeding, which leads to reduced yields and protein levels. Once yellowing or "hopper burn" is seen, the damage has already been done.
Producers are encouraged to scout grass pastures during the next few weeks to make sure second-generation true armyworm larvae have not infested them, says University of Missouri entomologist Wayne Bailey. The cool, wet spring produced heavy infestations of true armyworm larvae, which are now emerging as moths. True armyworm moths have uniform grayish-brown forewings and grayish-white hindwings. A small, distinctive white spot or dot can be seen near the center of each forewing. The moth's wingspan is about 1 3/8 to 1 1/2" with its main body being about 1/2 to 5/8" long. Very high numbers of moths can be flushed from grass pastures, yards and areas with tall grassy vegetation.
Source: University of Missouri.