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Redbacked cutworm  Moths

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Redbacked cutworm Moths

Redbacked cutworm Adults vary in color from pale clay-yellow to dark red. The wingspan is about 40 mm. Mature larvae are 35 to 40 mm long, often with a red or reddish-brown top stripe.

Redbacked cutworm  Moth

Redbacked cutworm Moth

Life Cycle : red-backed cutworm overwinters in the soil as an egg in a state of diapause.Diapause is a resting stage characterized by a uppression of physiological activity The eggs, which are deposited during the summer. but do not hatch until the first extended warm period the following spring when soil temperatures rise to 41° F or above.

Damage : Red-backed cutworm cause serious damage during a period from early May to mid-June. The plants usually are cut at or just above the surface and the tops of smaller plants are usually entirely consumed. Red-backed cutworm come above the surface of the soil at night in search of food, and usually feed above the surface at that time, especially if the soil is not too dry. Sometimes the cutworm burrows beside a plant and cuts it off just below the surface.

Redbacked cutworm

Redbacked cutworm

Management: Control of redbacked cutworm is very difficult because of the subterranean habits of the larvae. Larvae are easiest to control when they are small and fields should be checked regularly to detect the presence of young larvae. The larval population can be estimated by taking soil samples around the bases of host plants or weeds.

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