Sugarcane Aphid Arrives in Floyd County
The sugarcane aphid remains a hot topic, especially the subject of when or if the immigrant population, the one we on the Texas High Plains ‘traditionally’ have issues with, will arrive. Dr. Katelyn Kesheimer, Lubbock & Crosby EA-IPM reported a small and lethargic population of SCA in Lubbock County a few weeks ago. Since that time, little changed on the SCA front, until today.
Today I was contacted by Clay Golden, Independent Crop Consultant based in Floyd County and serving several surrounding counties. Clay sent a photo of one of his fields containing a small but growing colony of SCA consisting of one winged aphid and nearly a dozen nymphs from a sorghum field he consults on in Southwestern Floyd County near the community of McCoy. This is still a somewhat lethargic showing for the aphid compared to our previous experiences with the aphid. Reports from farther South indicate a similar behavior from the aphid this summer, which can be attributed to nature finding a balance to an invasive species and better IPM practices from producers once we learn how best to combat the invasive pest. We hope this ‘lethargic trend’ continues from the aphid, but if its infestation pattern follows 2015 & 2016, we should start seeing them more widespread in our area moving from east to west. If this aphid ‘changes’ into the more familiar ‘high gear’ we could expect them on the western side of Hale in a matter of weeks. We do not know what a more lethargic movement would look like, but if we must deal with this pest again this year, I hope we find out.