ISSUE DATE: 06/07/2010
By Kylene Scott
"This is the largest population of weevils that I've seen in at least 10 or 12 years in Kansas," Jeff Whitworth, entomology specialist with K-State Research and Extension, said.
What makes this year different? Whitworth has a couple of ideas, and he thinks the infestation has something to do with the weather patterns this spring and in late 2009.
"We probably had a relatively intense infestation this year because we enjoyed relatively mild, damp weather in the fall of 2009," he said. "Weevils start laying eggs in the fall, and they enjoyed relatively mild conditions until December. This provided considerable time for oviposition."
Whitworth thinks there may be other environmental factors, but he hasn't determined exactly what they are.
Typically, it is common to find one larvae per two or three stems, but in 2010 Whitworth is finding two to three larvae per stem. And that is out of the ordinary, he said.
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