Bug Scout 1981
Wet Weather May Reduce Some Insect Problems
(Tom Turpin, Entomologist, Purdue University)
Boy, did that cloud come up quickly!
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June 20, 1981

When it rains it pours!  That old slogan accurately describes the crop-planting season this year.  The excess rainfall leaches fertilizers, insecticides, and herbicides through the soil.  This reduces effectiveness of plant protection chemicals and can result in pesticide failures.

Insects and weeds manage to prosper regardless of the weather.  However, even these pests are influenced by wet soils.  For instance, corn rootworm larvae develop more slowly in cold, wet soils.  Delay in planting may mean fewer larvae survive than in a drier year.

First-generation European cornborer moths are not likely to find corn plants tall enough for oviposition.  Thus, the potential for first-generation cornborer damage is reduced in some areas.  Cutworms, on the other hand, can be worse pests in a wet season.

Insects are not like geese - what's good for the goose is not always good for the gander.

by Tom Turpin, Entomologist, Purdue University

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