Fall Armyworms in Pastures?

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I recently posted an article about being on the watch out for fall armyworm infestations in soybean (link here). This is especially important to think about anytime in the next several weeks if grassy weeds are common in a field. However, this also indicates a potentially early start in pastures, and be especially watchful in Bermudagrass. It seems early, but it appears fall armyworms are ahead of schedule based on the action to our south. It is important to begin scouting for this pest and continue for the remainder of the summer.

Close-up of fall armyworm (click to enlarge)
Close-up of fall armyworm

Treatment should be considered when populations exceed three to four larvae per square foot. If fields are ready or near ready for cutting, harvesting is suggested rather than applying insecticide. There are many insecticides labeled for use in pasture, and quite a few have little or no pre-harvest or grazing restrictions. Common options are the synthetic pyrethroids such as Baythroid, Karate/Warrior, or Mustang Max. These work but also have relatively low residual compared with other options such as Besiege, Intrepid, or Prevathon. Consider biting the bullet and spending a little more money in situations where fall armyworms get an early start in pastures. See the link below for suggested rates.

Link here for insecticide recommendations for pasture grasses


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