WeevilTrak Blog | GreenCast | Syngenta
Welcome to the WeevilTrak℠ blog, offering you updates about annual bluegrass weevil (ABW) from industry leading researchers. This blog will provide you with timely ABW activity across the north east as well as advice on scouting and controlling them using the Optimum Control Strategy.

Latest Posts: Dr. Ben McGraw

WeevilTrak Update from the Mid-Atlantic

A lot has happened since my last WeevilTrak post, including the completion of many of our chemical trials, and the appearance of annual bluegrass weevil (ABW) damage in many areas. The weather has, more or less, returned to normal, and growing degree day (GDD) accumulations are more consistent with years past. In fact, the late start to the season was overcome by the end of May, and we now sit ahead of past year GDD accumulations.

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Start building an ark

We are rapidly advancing through the first generation in Pennsylvania. Each week seems to bring a new WeevilTrak stage—and a ton of rain. Today is May 23 and we don’t have any rain forecasted in central Pennsylvania, which will break a nine day streak. The warm temperatures that are bringing daily growing degree day Base 50 accumulations in the high teens, plus the ample moisture, have weevils loving life.

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That escalated quickly

The bizarre weather year continues for Pennsylvania. Last week alone (April 30 to May 4) saw our ABW population shift into a higher gear.

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Season opener

We are nearing the end of April and are currently running about 100 growing degree days (GDD) behind where we were in 2017 in central and western Pennsylvania and northeast Ohio. All three sites were past the time for Stage 1 (apply an adulticide) in mid-April 2017. This year, we have been hanging on to the Forsythia full bloom stage (start of adult migration) for well over 10 days.

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Let’s go already

The Turfgrass Entomology Laboratory at Penn State is looking forward to another WeevilTrak season…..whenever that may be. The recent snowfall generated in the latest Nor’easter has pushed back the predicted start to the season. We are trying to use the time to prepare for the most intense portion of our field season (April – June), but like many of you, we are also anxious to get moving.

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Second generation larval damage on the way?

If I were to rank this season among previous ABW seasons, I would say that this has been one of the easier years. I have really struggled to find weevils on many of our research sites (including in untreated check areas). I think that this is because turf managers have done an excellent job when it has mattered most: spring.

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Is the worst over?

We are nearing the end of the 1st generation larvae in many locations between Ohio and central Pennsylvania. ABW damage was very apparent during the week of June 5th in our untreated turf areas at Bucknell University (central PA) and Fox Chapel (western PA). I was very concerned that damage would be exacerbated during this last week (June 12th) as temperatures hit the mid 90s for several days. However, this was not the case.

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Central PA to OH: The final push for Generation 1

It has been a month since my last blog post. At that time, adulticide applications were being made in western Pennsylvania, and central Pennsylvania and northern Ohio were trailing a week or so behind. Rhododendrons were in full bloom in Pittsburgh on Monday making the end of this week to early next week an ideal time to target larvae with an insecticide.

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Its “Go Time” for Western Pennsylvania; Further scouting for the central region

Significant adult movement was detected in Pittsburgh last Monday (April 10th). The most amount of adults were collected from edges of fairways, but substantial numbers were still found immediately adjacent to overwintering sites. The warm temperatures during the week (especially over Easter weekend) make it time to consider applying an adulticide for the Pittsburgh area. Ideally, these applications will be made early in the week.

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Weevil season underway in western Pennsylvania

Weevil season is officially underway in western Pennsylvania. Yesterday, (Monday March 27th) I was in the Pittsburgh area to check out the adult movement. Our site at Fox Chapel has accumulated 40 Growing Degree Days (GDDs) thus far and the Forsythia is seemingly in full bloom. Seemingly.

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