Manitoba farmers are getting some free biological pest control in the form of a fungus attacking bertha armyworms, the latest insect and disease report from Manitoba Agriculture Food and Rural Initiatives says.
There have been several reports of substantial numbers of bertha armyworm being found dead on the upper parts of plants in some areas,” the report said. “These reports have been coming from the southwest, Dauphin and Swan River areas, and the Interlake.
“This could be caused by a virus or a fungus, although in a couple of these accounts the larvae were described as looking “melted” on the plants, which is something typical of infection by the virus.”
An entomologist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Saskatoon is looking for samples from diseased populations of bertha armyworms. If interested and able to collect some diseased bertha armyworms, larvae can be placed in any type of tube or vial. Samples can be sent to:
The full report can be found at: http://www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/crops/miu/index.html