Corn School West: Scouting Tips for Corn Borer (Yes, Even in Resistant Varieties)

Corn borer eggs

Corn borer eggs overlap and look like fish scales

The corn borer is a relatively low-level pest in much of the corn crop in Western Canada, but it certainly poses a risk. What’s more, just because you planted a corn borer-resistant variety doesn’t mean you get out of scouting — every farmer who grows corn should be scouting for the pest, says John Gavloski, provincial entomologist for Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development.

Related: Why resistance built in to plants requires conservation

In this Corn School episode filmed in late July, Gavloski outlines why corn borer requires scouting, where you’re most likely to find eggs and the tell-tale signs that the eggs you find are corn borer. What’s more, Gavloski explains the life cycle of the borer, and at what stage the larvae enter the plant stem (that’s when control of them would be fruitless). He also explains why it’s important not to assume broken stalks in the fall are corn borer — which means you can even add fall scouting to your list.

Want more corn production information? This link takes you to the Corn School library!