Bt Cotton Fact Sheet Available for 2017 IPM Plans
It has been several seasons since we have had full tilt bollworm problems on the Texas High Plains. That just has not been so in other parts of the cotton belt. While they have been “away,” they have come up with some nasty habits. Things such as developing an increased resistance to pyrethroids and sneaking through Bts for likely multiple reasons including varying levels of resistance. Quite a bit of research has been done elsewhere on this pest and every bit of it is pertinent to our cotton production here. This is because, just like 2016, when and if we have economic issues with bollworms, most area agricultural entomologist estimate that 50-98% of our offending worms migrate to our fields from elsewhere during the growing season to cause our issues here and we usually do not have beneficials that can clean them out so easily, or cheaply, as we did last season.
So, with the herbicide technology taking center stage for our 2017 IPM plans, I urge area producers to at least familiarize themselves with exactly what type of Bt, if any, is tagged with your herbicide technology of choice, and to analyze how much benefit (there is still solid benefit to all types of Bt in cotton) you can expect from that Bt and exactly which pest it is truly targeted for. To help us with this Dr. David Kerns, Texas IPM Coordinator, and Dr. Suhas Vyavhare, district 2 cotton entomologist, have just this week released a Bt Cotton Fact Sheet for 2017.http://lubbock.tamu.edu/files/2017/03/Bt-Cotton_ENTO067-1.pdf
Within this fact sheet, you should see the definition of Bt, all the currently available types of Bt in cotton, the frequently asked questions about Bt, and the current and studied efficacy rate of the various traits against all the target Lepidopteran species.