By David Bennett, Delta Farm Press
In the state of Arkansas, 2017 has been a year when redbanded stink bugs are gaining ground.
“They overwintered in crimson clover planted along roadsides and that’s a common cover crop plant, as well,” says Gus Lorenz, Arkansas Extension entomologist. “In March and April, we were sweeping and finding them in the clover, so we knew they could be problem.
“Redband overwintering here is not a common situation because it’s a subtropical pest. It usually moves in from Louisiana and Texas and gets here much later in the year. In the past, normally, only the southern tier of Arkansas counties has had to deal with it.”
Well, the pest overwintered as far north as Pine Bluff. “We know that because we sampled and found them.
“Sure enough, as the soybean crop has matured in the southeast part of the state, our growers have found they’ve hit threshold. A lot of growers have had to treat once or twice. A few acres have been treated even three times.
“The redbanded stink bug isn’t like the southern green (stink bug) or browns, it causes more damage, is a bit harder to control, and it bounces back from applications much quicker.”
Because it’s a tougher pest, instead of the threshold being nine per 25 sweeps — the common threshold for other stink bugs — the redbanded threshold is only four-to-six per 25 sweeps.