Pest Management Tips & Resources

Expand a category below to find pest-specific information and resources.

Additional and crop-specific pest management information is available on UMN Extension Crop Production.

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Soybean Gall Midge

Soybean gall midge is a newly described insect pest of soybeans and, as of the fall of 2019, small populations have been documented in most southwest Minnesota counties.

Soybean Aphid

The soybean aphid (SBA) is currently the most damaging insect pest of Minnesota soybeans. Potentially yield-limiting populations have occurred somewhere in the state since the SBA was first identified in the state during the late summer of 2000 in southeast Minnesota. The 2003 and 2008 infestations were particularly widespread and severe.

Our research explores SBA management techniques and technologies and looks to integrate existing and traditional pest management methods to mitigate economic yield losses from SBA (Visit Research Results to view the results of SBA insecticide efficacy studies in SW MN).

Below are some of the SBA resources developed for soybean growers in Minnesota:

Scouting for Soybean Aphid video

Late-Season Soybean Aphid Scouting video

Soybean Aphids Landing on Buckthorn video

White Grubs

The white grub larvae of several species of June beetles are sporadic pests of Minnesota crops including corn. Most species have multi-year life cycles.  White grubs in corn production provides information on biology and management of these insects.

Corn rootworm, European corn borer and Bt

Bt corn with traits conferring resistance to corn rootworms (CRW) and European corn borer (ECB) offer growers a simple, seed-based solution to managing these pests. These traits have been far more effective than soil insecticides or seed treatments in protecting corn roots. Corn rootworms have developed resistance to many control tactics over the last 50 years including crop rotation, soil insecticides, and foliar insecticides. Populations of western and most recently northern corn have been found to be resistant to one or more Bt proteins.  

Bt proteins have been more effective at controlling ECB than CRW and the widespread use of above-ground Bt traits has suppressed corn borer populations overall. Recently, resistance of some eastern Canadian ECB populations to one of the Bt proteins was documented. However, no populations of Bt-resistant Bt have been observed in Minnesota. Some resources on these two insects and management with Bt follow.


True Armyworm

Two-Spotted Spider Mites

Prolonged drought raises the threat of two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae) outbreaks in soybeans and corn. Spider mite outbreaks are rare but have occurred more frequently in recent years (1988, 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2012). Farmers and their crop management advisors may want to read these resources from University of Minnesota Extension:

Neonicotinoid Effectiveness

Neonicitinoid seed treatments are effective management tools for several seed and seedling insect pests of corn, soybean and other crops. However, most of these pests are very sporadic in occurrence and good stewardship of these crop production chemistries is important to to prevent environmental contamination and effects on non-pest species. The following multi-state publication addresses insect management with these insecticides.

UMN General Resources

Other Pest Management Resources

On-farm Research Guide

  • UMN Extension On-farm Research Guide - developed by Bruce Potter and Paulo Pagliari. Advice on setting up on-farm studies and a spreadsheet to help analyze results.
    • On-farm trial worksheet (This file will open as a Google Sheet by default. To download as an Excel spreadsheet, go to File > Download > Microsoft Excel)