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Check canola for flea beetles every few days

Canola growers should continue to scout for early season pests every few days. Recent cold temperatures do not mean that flea beetles are hibernating. It is also important to remember that the days of protection from a seed treatment start as soon as the seed is in the ground.


May 22, 2008
By Canola Council of Canada

May 21,
2008

Cold
temperatures may have slowed growth of the canola crop, but that doesn’t mean
flea beetles are hibernating. Keep scouting for these early season pests every
few days, and remember that days of protection from a seed treatment start ticking
away as soon as the seed goes in the ground, says Matt Stanford, agronomy
specialist for the Canola Council of Canada. 

“Cool
conditions make slow emerging canola plants more vulnerable,” he says. “Even in
weather like this, flea beetles are showing up in traps in the
Saskatoon area.”

Be extra
vigilant in areas where flea beetle populations were high last fall. Look for
flea beetles and evidence of feeding on weeds like wild mustard, stinkweed and
shepherd’s purse, Stanford advises. With cooler air temperatures, flea beetles
may be inclined to stay closer to the ground where it’s warmer and they can
feed off stems, he adds.  

If you see
shot holes in cotyledons and true leaves made by feeding flea beetles, step up
monitoring. Flea beetle activity can increase dramatically, even exceeding the
action threshold of 25% damage in a matter of days if conditions become warm
and dry, says Stanford.

Flea beetle
forecasting and control – FAQ AARD www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/faq8031?opendocument 

The Canola
Growers Manual – Flea beetle information and ID
www.canola-council.org/canola_growers_manual.aspx 

MAFRI Flea
Beetle Fact Sheet
www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/crops/insects/fad09s00.html 

Canola
Scouting and Sweep Net Insect ID Card
www.canola-council.org/canola_resources/product10.aspx