With the start of July, growers and pest control advisors are closely monitoring rice fields for armyworm. UC Rice Farm Advisor, Luis Espino said they have been tracking moth traps over the past few years and noticed a pattern. Generally, peak armyworm activity typically occurs about a week after the peak number of moths are found in traps. A few weeks ago, Espino told AgNet West that it was unclear what type of year it was going to be for armyworm pressure, but peak season for activity was on the way.
“Usually by the first and second week in July that’s when we are at the peak of armyworm activity,” said Espino. “The past few years the problem hasn’t been bad; 2015 was the outbreak year. We’ve had a few years where we’ve seen high populations. But the past two or maybe three years populations have been maybe a little bit higher than normal but still not damaging all across the board.”
Listen to the radio report below.