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Insect & Pests

All Insect & Pests Content

aerial view of South Dakota farm and surrounding land

Pest & Crop Newsletter

SDSU Extension publishes the South Dakota Pest & Crop Newsletter to provide growers, producers, crop consultants, and others involved in crop production with timely news pertinent to management of pests, diseases, and weeds in South Dakota.

Black beetles with heads as wide as thorax on brown soybean pods.

Broad-Headed Bugs in Soybean: Should You Be Worried?

This week we received a report of insects infesting a soybean field. However, they weren’t insects that we generally think of when the term "soybean insect pests" comes up.

Black beetles with orange or yellow spots feeding on a ripe tomato.

Insects are Invading My Produce!

Ripe fruit that has been injured as well as ground fall fruits often attract undesirable insects into an area.

Brown beetle with hairy body with black mottled pattern.

What are Those Large Beetles in My Garden?

One of the insects that starts to attract attention this time of year is the bumble flower beetle.

Woody looking zucchini plant.

What’s Killing My Zucchini and Squash Plants?

For many of us, this time of year is tough for our zucchini, squash and pumpkin plants. A close inspection of wilting plants may reveal a sawdust-like substance around the soil surface or on the base of the stem. When pushed, the plants typically break and reveal clear evidence of insect feeding through the stem.

Two common praying mantises. The English mantis and the Chinese mantis.

Are There Praying Mantises in South Dakota?

The short answer to the title of the article is "yes." Both the European mantis and the Chinese mantis can be found in South Dakota. As their names indicate, neither species is native to North America.

An aerial view of a soybean field with noticable rows of yellowing plants due to SCN infection.

Early Yellowing in a Soybean Field May Indicate Presence of the Soybean Cyst Nematode

Some portions of soybean fields may show clusters of plants yellowing while the rest of the field is still green. One of the factors that could lead to soybean plants showing early yellowing in clusters is soybean cyst nematode (SCN).

Green and yellow grasshopper with black chevron markings on hindlegs.

Should I Be Concerned About Grasshoppers When Planting Winter Wheat?

During 2019 we have received varying reports regarding grasshopper populations. Many reports have indicated that grasshopper numbers are down. However, we have also received reports of very large grasshopper populations in some areas of South Dakota. So why such a difference?

A pasture containing a mixture of grasses and alfalfa.

Scouting for Grasshoppers in Pasture and Alfalfa

For 2019, we have either received reports of very high grasshopper numbers or of very low or nearly absent populations. Most reports of high populations have originated from areas near rivers and other waterways. This suggests that the rich foliage along the banks of waterways has provided excellent habitat for grasshoppers and has boosted their populations in those areas.

A young man in a gray shirt and white cap scouting a soybean field for soybean aphids.

Should I Spray for Soybean Aphids? What’s the Threshold?

Although many soybean fields are behind schedule, so are the soybean aphid populations. In many reported areas, there are hotspots within a field where a few soybean plants may be heavily infested.