Doug Johnson, Extension Entomologist
The capture of armyworm moths in the UK-IPM traps increased significantly in both the Lexington and Princeton traps for the trap week ending Friday May 3rd. See the Graphics at:
In both cases the increase is large and is probably related to the warm weather over this period. Nevertheless, these captures will just bring us back to about average (Lexington) and a bit above average at Princeton. It is too soon to know if these increases point us to an outbreak population.
Even though trap captures have been reduced, and late this year compared to last, we need to remember that these pests are out and about. Just because the trap captures are low and late does not mean that there will not be a problem in some fields. Corn planting and growth are behind as well, and we are (at this writing Fri 5/3/13) about to enter another wet cool period. This type of weather will once again slow down planting and corn growth, and tends to favor armyworm development. Even though the risk is not above average, there is some risk just the same, and corn and wheat should be scouted for this pest.
I have had one report from far west KY that sound like armyworm on struggling 1-2 leaf corn though the diagnosis is not definitive. Just the same, it is best to remain alert for this pest.