There’s a new pest headed our way. James Tansey, provincial pest management specialist with Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Agriculture gave the audience the bad news at SaskWheat’s semi-annual meeting at the Farm Progress Show on June 20.
The cereal leaf beetle is an invasive pest, common in the U.S. It has been spotted on the Prairies for the past few years and is likely to become more common.
This insect causes yield and quality losses by damaging leaves and limiting photosynthesis in the plant. It feeds on oats, barley, rye, wheat and corn.
If you see feeding damage that you think has been caused by the cereal leaf beetle, get in touch with your provincial pest specialist, to help them out with their informal survey of the spread of this pest.
Spraying will not likely be necessary at this point. And it may be that biological control is more effective than chemicals for this particular bug. Watch for more information on this topic and how the cereal leaf beetle spread in the 2018 growing season in a winter issue of Grainews.