There has been some debate about the effect of the recent winter on the survival of several insect populations, including those of the corn flea beetle. We do know that mild winters (when the sum of the average monthly temperatures for December, January, and February is greater than 90°F) improve the survival of overwintered beetles and the bacterium that causes Stewart's disease. It was a very cold winter in Iowa, however, we had continuous snow cover for 90 days or more throughout much of Iowa. In the central and northern counties, snow cover of 1 to 2 feet was common for much of this time.
Iowa State University
Rice, Marlin E., "Expectations for corn flea beetles in 2001" (2001). Integrated Crop Management News. 1870.
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