Overall, corn rootworm populations have been dampened in Iowa this season. A few factors likely contributed to this decrease:
- An exceptionally harsh winter may have increased mortality of overwintering eggs.
- Saturated soils in June may have increased mortality of corn rootworm larvae.
- Some fields with extremely high corn rootworm populations were likely rotated out of corn, which disrupts the pests' life cycle. Since 2011, corn production has decreased in Iowa by one-half million acres according to the USDA..
- Cooler summer temperatures translate to a slower growth for corn rootworm larvae in the soil, and this may increase natural mortality from insect-killing fungi and other factors.
Iowa State University
Hodgson, Erin W., "Update on Corn Rootworm in Iowa" (2014). Integrated Crop Management News. 865.
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