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.

Archive: April 2015

Adult Populations Peaking in Weevilville

The lights are on and just about everyone is home. The past two weeks have brought more consistent spring-like temperatures in the Mid-Atlantic and coincidentally more noticeable adult annual bluegrass (ABW) activity on fine turf.

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Spring's Fling

Black ice and snow flurries kicked at western New York Wednesday morning, reminding us of the vagaries of spring. A step back into cooler temperatures means that plants pause and insects slow down. For the annual bluegrass weevil (ABW), immigration undoubtedly stutters.

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Weather, Adult Emergence and Plant Phenology

It has been very cool and wet the last few days in northern New England. The weather has stalled the accumulation of degree days and the development of forsythia. It may be cool the rest of the week. Degree day accumulation is about six days behind last year. Forsythia are just starting to bloom in southern locations. The first adult emergence on my annual bluegrass weevil (ABW) monitoring sites was in Manchester, Vermont on April 20.

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This is Only the Tip of the Iceberg

Our lab spent much of the week looking for annual bluegrass weevil (ABW) adults, and trying to get a handle on where the majority of the adult population is located. Vacuum sampling between overwintering sites and short turf areas revealed that the vast majority of weevils in central Pennsylvania (> 95 percent at most sites) are still in the roughs. We found several sites where some weevils had made it all the way to the fairways, but most, if not all, were in south-facing turf stands, which are likely to warm up faster than other areas of the course.

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Migration Plantation

Last week marked the Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C. The afternoons were marked with warm sun and many different plants in the landscape were blooming. We are seeing more migration of annual bluegrass weevil (ABW) adults on all of the sites I am working with for WeevilTrak.

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Annual Bluegrass Weevils in New England

Annual bluegrass weevils (ABW) are finally on the move in New England. We visited a site about 20 miles from the University of Massachusetts campus earlier this week and collected vacuum samples from two roughs and two fairways. Even though we did not notice any weevils on the surface, we certainly found them in the vacuum samples. I just finished dissecting those ABW today (Friday, April 17) and made some interesting observations.

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Double Down

As expected, the warm Easter weekend shook things up in the mid-Atlantic from a growing degree day (GDD) and phenological indicator standpoint.

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Adults in the Rough, Fine Turf is Next and Perimeter Sprays

Albeit slowly, we have started to accumulate growing degree days (GDD). Currently, the Maryland sites have about 30 GDD. Sites in Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey have less than 20 GDD, whereas the Allentown location has only 4-5 GDD.

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The Calm Before the Storm

As spring-like conditions slowly make their way back into the Northeast, we can consider this the "calm before the storm". We have not yet accumulated any degree days at our sites in Massachusetts, but this is not unusual for us. I checked the WeevilTrak™ data from the previous five years at Hickory Ridge Golf Club in Amherst, Mass. and found that in two previous years we had not yet accumulated any degree days on April 1.

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“Frozen” in Time – April Fools’?

As encouraging as it was to see some adult Annual Bluegrass Weevils (ABW) last week, if for no other reason than to get ourselves calibrated to begin thinking about scouting and control plans, it was equally encouraging to see that Mother Nature can be merciful at times, too. As we ramped up growing degree days (GDD) within a few days, just as quickly, a cold weekend froze those measures and essentially halted ABW activity.

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