Navel orangeworm is an ongoing issue for nut growers and estimating worm potential could be a valuable tool in management. “One of the bases of integrated pest management is doing some sort of population assessment and damage potential before you decide what to do about it and when,” UC Cooperative Extension IPM Advisor Emily Symmes said.
Symmes said the focus from advisors is all about sanitation, which she admits is a good thing but needs to be coupled with self-assessments. “We’ve focused a lot on just sheer numbers of mummy nuts left in the orchard…and reducing the number of mummies to a certain level, and that’s great,” Symmes said. “But I have coupled that now with an increased conversation on let’s look at the total number of mummies in addition to the amount of larval infestation in those mummies to get you a better idea of where your potential hot-spots are.”
Sanitation can be expensive and hard to do with access issues. Symmes said this prioritize areas in the orchard and growers can focus on them from the top down. “The idea is to gather as much information as you can to help you best target where to first focus all of those sanitation efforts, make sure to get those done and then come back to those lower pressure areas,” she said.