Home 5 Ag Stories Knowing when to attack Japanese beetles is key

Knowing when to attack Japanese beetles is key

Photo by Ben Nuelle

July is in full swing, we really focus on the pests which are trying to take up residence in our fields. Some of these pests are ornerier than others. To be effective you not only need the right products to protect your plants, but also the knowledge of when to use them.

Japanese beetles have been starting to make their presence known in the Midwest over the past week or so. Those little bugs seem like they would be harmless, right? Well, these little beetles invade and multiply very quickly. Plants and tress can be overwhelmed in very short order. The trick for handling an infestation of Japanese beetles is knowing when to strike.

The University of Illinois has published some criteria to help producers know when to deal with the pests. Extension Entomologist Nick Seiter says right now beetle populations are too low for treatments to be effective.

Many corn producers worry about the one-two punch of Japanese beetles and root worms. Seiter says the threshold for dealing with a combination of pests is still the same.

The moral of this story is not to jump the gun when you are getting ready to protect your crops. Careful scouting is key to having effective treatments.