Flea beetle

  • Insect update

    Flea beetle

    As predicted by moth traps, the Peace region has fields at thresholds. Beyond there, a few field here and there across the Prairies have been sprayed but the worm is not a problem on most fields.

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  • Flea beetles: Why do they seem worse?

    Flea beetle

    The flea beetle situation seems worse than usual. The simplest reason seems the most logical: Warm and dry weather favours flea beetle emergence and activity. The same dry weather slows crop growth, leaving plants at a vulnerable small size for longer.

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  • Make the right flea beetle spray decision: 8 steps

    Flea beetle

    While only a small percentage of canola fields tend to require foliar insecticides to manage flea beetles in addition to seed treatment, all fields should be monitored to assess the potential threat. Begin monitoring right after emergence and through until at least the four-leaf stage.

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  • Late-season flea beetles

    Flea beetle

    Flea beetles feeding on canola leaves and pods are unlikely to cause an economic loss. Entomologists have not set thresholds for late season flea beetle feeding, but it’s generally believed that numbers have to be very high — perhaps 100 per plant — before economic losses occur. You may also note that flea beetles can be highly variable at this time of year, with high numbers on some plants and next to none on others.

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  • Reader question: Will plants survive flea beetle stem feeding?

    Flea beetle

    If the tissue underneath the bite is still living, the seedling will likely survive as long as (1) the stem can still bear the weight of the cotyledons and first leaves, (2) the stem is not to subjected to more feeding, and (3) weather conditions are good for plant growth.

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  • Flea beetles: Why are some fields so bad in 2018?

    Flea beetle

    Early-seeded and slow-growing canola crops (usually due to dry conditions) have faced more flea beetle pressure this year, particularly in Manitoba and central Alberta. Flea beetle emergence tended to occur before most canola crops had emerged, so flea beetles concentrated on the earliest fields. And because topsoil moisture levels were fairly low, these canola plants were growing very slowly. Concentrated feeding and the plant’s inability to out-grow this feeding meant many crops were sprayed.

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  • Quick note on spraying flea beetles in hot weather

    Flea beetle

    Synthetic pyrethroids (Decis, Matador/Silencer, for examples) benefit from late-day spraying because they should be applied when temperatures are below 25°C.

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  • Flea beetles and stressed crop

    Flea beetle

    With hot, dry conditions, canola seedlings already under pressure from intense flea beetle feeding dried out and died.

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  • Flea beetles: Temperature influences activity

    Flea beetle

    Cool, windy, wet weather can delay flea beetle emergence. Peak emergence of the crucifer flea beetle occurs when ground temperatures reach 15°C, which is why perhaps it seems numbers are lower in many areas so far this year. They just haven’t come out yet in large numbers.

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  • Are those flea beetles worth spraying?

    Flea beetle

    A few flea beetles in a field are not worth the time and investment to spray. They will not cause economic losses. Only when defoliation reaches 25% across the field and feeding pressure continues does it make sense to spray for flea beetles.

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  • 8 steps to make the right flea beetle spray decision

    Flea beetle

    While only a small percentage of canola fields tend to require flea beetle management in addition to seed treatment, all fields should be monitored to assess the potential threat. Begin monitoring right after emergence and through until at least the four-leaf stage. Seed treatment can be effective through most of this period, but slow starting or slow growing crops under intense flea beetle pressure may require a foliar spray.

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  • Flea beetles: At-risk crops

    Flea beetle

    Crucifer and striped flea beetles are feeding together in this crop. Credit: Brent Wiebe

    Canola fields at greatest risk from flea beetles — therefore fields most likely to need a spray — tend to be those seeded early and that went through a long stretch of slow growth.

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  • 8 steps to make the right flea beetle decision

    Flea beetle

    Fleabeetle_underleaf_BrunoSK_May272015_AmandaWuchner small

    Here is how to make the flea beetle spray decision….

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  • Flea beetles: When to spray?

    Flea beetle

    Flea beetles have attacked the leaves and stem of early canola seedlings. Credit: Keith Gabert

    Flea beetles are feeding on volunteer and early-seeded canola but their presence does not mean they need to be sprayed.

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  • Flea beetles feeding on volunteers

    Flea beetle

    Warm weather has meant an earlier emergence of overwintering adult flea beetles. Given that flea beetles will be active when canola emerges, growers will want to pay attention in the few weeks after emergence to see how seed treatment protection holds up and whether additional sprays are warranted.

    Striped flea beetles. Credit: Denis Pageau, AAFC

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