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A Section 18 request has been approved by EPA for the use of Tenchu 20SG on up to 100,000 acres of Louisiana rice to control rice stink bugs. Click here to read about biology and management of rice stink bugs. This product will provide an alternative mode of action to the pyrethroids that are currently registered for use in Louisiana. The exemption expires October 31, 2012. The distributor in Louisiana is Mr. Michael Hensgens with G&H in Crowley. According to Mr. Hensgens, the suggested retail price is $24.30 lb at ½#per acre = $12.15/ac.

Rate and restrictions: Please contact your local County Agent for a copy of the Section 18 registration before using this product. Remember that the label is the law! The registered rate is from 7.5 to 10.5 oz of product per acre. A maximum of two applications can be made per acre per season. A seven day pre-harvest interval must be observed. Be aware that this product is toxic to honeybees – read the Section 18 registration for precautions to avoid bee injury.

Treatment threshold:We do not recommend treating until you exceed the recommended thresholds as described on the Section 18 label (the current label reads that you should follow the Texas guideline – this has been amended to reflect LSU AgCenter recommendations in pub 2270). To scout for rice stink bugs in the field, use a 15-inch diameter sweep net, take 10 sweeps at 10 different areas around each field. Count the number of bugs collected after every 10 sweeps and then treat if they exceed the threshold as described in LSU AgCenter Publication 2270. During the first two weeks of heading, treat when there are 30 or more stink bugs per 100 sweeps. From the dough stage until 2 weeks before harvest, treat fields when there are 100 stink bugs per 100 sweeps.

Before we consider applying for an emergency exemption next field season (should we feel it is warranted) we need to gather some specific data. We need your assistance gathering this information.

1. Resistance. Please notify us if you believe that you have a stink bug population that is resistant to pyrethoids. We will gather insect samples to run laboratory bioassays to screen for insecticide resistance.

2. Efficacy. If you use Tenchu 20SG we would appreciate any data you gather on residual efficacy of the product. Data from Texas has indicated that it provides a longer window of activity than pyrethoids. This will potentially result in a reduction of the number of insecticide applications to a field in one season. We will be conducting efficacy trials in Louisiana to measure residual efficacy when compared to pyrethoids. If you’d like to participate in a field demo, please contact your local County Agent and they can work with me to make arrangements.

3. Milling. We also need your assistance in gathering data on milling quality of rice. Specifically, we need more data on reductions taken at the mill in the form of peck and broken grains which is attributed to Rice stink bug feeding injury. Any information you can provide on grade reductions attributed to rice stink bug feeding injury will be appreciated.

Please contact me if you need additional information.

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This article was originally published in Louisiana Farm and Ranch, February 2012. I’m reposting it here for your information. This is an important article to read as growers are making their decision about insecticide seed treatments in rice for the 2012 season.

Authors: Natalie Hummel, Associate Professor and Assistant to the Director & Mike Stout, Professor

We have had quite a few inquiries about using a combination of seed treatments, neonicotinoid and Dermacor X-100, in rice. While this practice is legal, using more than one seed treatment is not a practice that we encourage in most circumstances because it results in more insecticide use in rice production than may be necessary.

The rice industry is considering one of these combinations of seed treatments: 1) Dermacor X-100 and CruiserMaxx or 2) Dermacor X-100 and NipsitINSIDE. Typically, a combination of seed treatments is only being considered when planting rice at low seeding rates, primarily because of concerns about the lack of efficacy of CruiserMaxx and NipsitINSIDE at hybrid seeding rates (25 lbs/acre or less) that we have observed in our rice water weevil demonstration trials and small plot trials. The second scenario is where Dermacor X-100 is being used for rice water weevil management and there is a history of stand reduction because of a sporadic pest infestation, usually chinch bugs or armyworms. Combining seed treatments provides a benefit of protecting the crop from injury by some primary and sporadic crop pests.

As the rice industry moves toward a more sustainable crop production profile, the LSU AgCenter strongly encourages rice producers to be good stewards of these insecticide seed treatments. Stewardship of these seed treatments means avoiding the use of insecticides not needed in the crop. For this reason, we discourage the widespread use of a combination of insecticide seed treatments in rice. We instead encourage the person making the seed treatment decision to consider the spectrum of pests that each insecticide can control, the seeding rate, and the history of crop pests in that field.

It is important to remember that each of the seed treatments controls a different group of insects. Dermacor X-100 belongs to a class of insecticides called anthranilic diamides, which target a specific receptor in the muscle of the insect. Dermacor X-100 is registered to control rice water weevil larvae, borers (Mexican rice borer, Rice stalk borer, Sugarcane borer), armyworms and colaspis (2ee registration for suppression). CruiserMaxx and NipsitINSIDE are both neonicotinoid insecticides that affect the nervous system of target insects. CruiserMaxx is labeled to control rice water weevils (larvae and adults), chinch bugs, colaspis and thrips. NipsitINSIDE is labeled to control rice water weevils and colaspis. We do not have data to support the ability of CruiserMaxx or NipsitINSIDE to control chinch bugs, colaspis or thrips in Louisiana, but we anticipate that they will control these pests based on observations from other crops and from rice in other parts of the world. As you study these seed treatments, you can see how a combination of these products can control most of the insects that attack rice in Louisiana. This is part of the reason why there is an inclination toward using a combination of treatments.

Here are criteria for you to consider as you make your seed treatment decision. The first is the seeding rate. This needs to be considered because neonicotinoids don’t always provide good control of rice water weevils at low seeding rates. Dermacor X-100 does provide control of rice water weevils at all seeding rates, but it will not control chinch bugs or thrips. According to the chemical manufacturers, neonicotinoids do control other early season pests including chinch bugs, thrips and colaspis. Another challenge at low seeding rates is that the plant stand is thin and is less tolerant to any insects that reduce the stand by killing seedlings. Insects that can reduce the plant stand count include armyworms, chinch bugs, colaspis and thrips. Borers can infest fields after the plant is at the green ring growth stage and reduce yields by causing deadhearts and whiteheads. Remember that if you put out a combination of seed treatments for a sporadic pest and that pest doesn’t infest your field, then you didn’t need to use a combination of seed treatments. We have data that indicate that rice water weevils infest more than 90% of rice fields in Louisiana. This justifies the use of a seed treatment to control rice water weevils as part of a good IPM program. That is not the case for many of our sporadic pests (armyworms, chinch bugs, colaspis, borers, etc.), which rarely occur at levels that justify treatment. Also, keep in mind that we rarely recommend an insecticide treatment for thrips in rice; usually the damage is not severe enough to require an insecticide.

Here are a couple of situations where a combination of seed treatments may be a good management decision. If you are planting rice at a low seeding rate and you anticipate that you will have an infestation of chinch bugs that would justify a pyrethroid treatment, then a combination of seed treatments would be a good option. In this situation, you would be using Dermacor X-100 to control rice water weevils, borers and armyworms and adding a neonicotinoid to control chinch bugs or thrips. Also, if you are planting rice at conventional seeding rates and you are using a neonicotinoid seed treatment to control rice water weevils and colaspis, but you typically have problems with armyworms or borers, then you may want to apply Dermacor X-100 to your seed.

There is one more thing to consider as you make your seed treatment decisions for the 2012 season. The EPA recently approved a Section 24C (special local need) registration for use of Dermacor X-100 in water-seeded rice. If you are interested in this option, a certified seed treater can provide more information. Remember that you CANNOT use the other seed treatments (CruiserMaxx or NipsitINSIDE) in water-seeded rice. The use of CruiserMaxx and NipsitINSIDE in water-seeded rice is illegal and will not provide control of the target pests.

If you have any questions about the seed treatment options registered for use in rice, please contact your local County Agent, or Natalie Hummel (nhummel@agcenter.lsu.edu) for more information.

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As you may recall, we received approval for a Section 18 registration for Tenchu 20SG to control rice stink bug in Louisiana rice. This approval came very late in the season when most of the southern crop was either harvested, or well on it’s way to harvest. Fortunately, we were able to work with a team of county agents to line up some field locations and compare the efficacy of Tenchu 20SG to pyrethroid treatments. Here is a brief report of what we learned.

Nine field sites across Louisiana were identified for participation in the demonstration program. At all locations two adjacent fields or cuts were sprayed separately with a pyrethroid or Tenchu 20SG. Sweep net samples were taken within 24 to 48 hours prior to spraying at each site between the growth stages of anthesis and hard dough. Insecticides were applied by aerial applicators at recommended rates for both products: 8 oz/ac of Tenchu 20 SG, 2 oz/ac of Karate, and 4 oz of Mustang Max. Additional sweep net counts were taken at 48 hours and 7 days after treatment to determine residual effects of either treatment against infestation of RSB. The pyrethroid portion of one field site remained above threshold at the 48 hour sampling point and was treated with a second application at 48 hours to prevent further damage. Samples of rough rice were collected from all treated sites at harvest and analyzed by a USDA certified inspector at Bertrand Rice in Elton, LA to determine percent pecky rice and determine the USDA grade of the sample.

We analysed the data in SAS using a Proc Mixed Procedure. The average number of RSB per 10 sweeps was not significantly different when analyzed by treatment or time. There was no significant difference in the percentage of peck between treatments, and no grade reductions were applied to any samples gathered.

Thus, we concluded that either Tenchu 20SG or pyrethroids, when applied appropriately, both provided good control of RSB and prevented grade reductions due to peck in our demonstration test. We are continuing to conduct research on rice stink bug thresholds and treatment strategies. I’ll talk about these results at the winter production meetings in 2012. We will also present these results in a poster at the Rice Technical Working Group meeting in 2012.

Special thanks to all our demonstration cooperators: Floyd Baker, David Bertrand, Keith Collins, Richard Costello, Chris & Randy Dauzat, Barrett Courville, Rusty Elston, Terry Erwin, Eddie Eskew, Rob Ferguson, Noble Guedon, Michael Hensgens, Nan Huff, Ron Landis, Mitchell Leger, Cecil Parker and Larry White.

This project was coordinated by Bryce Blackman, Mike Stout, Anna Meszaros and myself.

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It’s funny how when you work a field crop, life eventually moves in a pretty predictable cycle. Well, it’s that time of year again. Time to start scouting for rice stink bugs in headed rice, although it does seem to be coming a little bit earlier than usual. This is probably a result of very early planting of rice in some parts of south Louisiana. Unfortunately, field conditions are favoring a bad year for stink bugs. The drought conditions have killed off grasses that would normally serve as a host/reservoir for stink bugs, so there is a chance they will move more readily into heading rice. Recent reports from Arkansas and Mississippi indicate that large populations of rice stink bugs are present in the mid-south. We are already finding them in headed rice fields at the rice research station in Crowley, La.

Last Friday, Johnny Saichuk and I scouted a variety trial in Vermilion Parish where the CL111 was heading first and was already infested with rice stink bugs.

Rice stinkbugs are light tan in color with points on the corners of the pronotum.

I received a call about the field because they noticed quite a bit of blanking in the panicles. They also found a high population of grasshoppers and suspected they may have been causing injury.

Longhorned grasshopper adult in heading rice. You can tell it is an adult because of the wings.

When we assessed the situation, Johnny determined that the blanking was most likely physiological, some sort of effect of weather conditions when the rice was at panicle development (pd). You can read more about it in his field notes. If you don’t receive Johnny Saichuk’s Field Notes via e-mail, please send Johnny an e-mail to be added to his list: jsaichuk@agcenter.lsu.edu. As we examined the grasshopper situation, we found that the grasshoppers were long-horned grasshoppers, which are typically predators. We would not recommend treating for grasshoppers unless they are causing excessive defoliation. Click here to read more about long-horned grasshoppers in rice. Odds are that they were attracted by the rice stink bugs, which we did find to be abundant in the field. We advised holding off on an insecticide application until the rice reached 50% heading. It is very tempting to put out a pyrethroid with the fungicide application at early-heading, but research has shown that this is too early to prevent injury. Putting out an early application will probably just add to the number of times you need to spray the field, while not providing any additional protection. To learn more about rice stink bug management click here.

We have a graduate student, Bryce Blackman, who is currently studying rice stink bugs for his dissertation research. One aspect of his work is to re-evaluate treatment thresholds. At the moment, we continue to use the standard recommendations. To scout for rice stink bugs in the field, use a 15-inch diameter sweep net, take 10 sweeps at 10 different areas around each field. Count the number of bugs collected after every 10 sweeps. In the first two weeks of heading, treat fields when there are 30 or more bugs per 100 sweeps. Pesticides that can be used include malathion, methyl parathion and a variety of pyrethroids including Declare, Karate Z, Mustang Max, Prolex and a number of generics. From the dough stage until two weeks before harvest, treat fields when there are 100 bugs per 100 sweeps. When approaching two weeks before harvest, you can treat with any of the chemicals listed above with the exception of Karate Z and Prolex, which have 21 day pre-harvest intervals. You can learn more about rice stink bug biology by clicking here.

Resistance to pyrethroids has been increasing in Texas, and there is a chance that we could have some issues with resistance developing in Louisiana also. If you have a field where you are finding it particularly difficult to control the rice stink bugs with your traditional control strategies, please contact me so we can sample the insect population. If you have further questions about rice stink bug management, please contact your local County Agent.

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Last week we planted the rice water weevil demonstration test sites in Evangeline and St. Landry Parish. Both locations are the hybrid variety XL745. At each location we will be comparing the seed treatments CruiserMaxx, Dermacor X-100 and NipsitInside to an untreated check.

Drilling the strip trial at Fontenot farm in St. Landry Parish.Rice was planted using a 42 foot wide drill pulled by a John Deere.GPS monitoring of planting plots.

The GPS monitoring system was used to line up each of the strips – each treatment was replicated twice across the field.

Drill rows in the field.

Charlie will be growing 1200 acres of rice this year.  This is the last bit of rice he is planting for this season.  Soil conditions were ideal for drilling.  A nearby field has been planted in a Horizon Ag strip trial to evaluate varieties.

LSU AgCenter County Agent Vince Deshotel vacuuming treated seed out of the drill between treatments.

Vince Deshotel vacuumed out the drill between treatments.  We also gathered seed samples and will send them off for analysis to confirm the rate of insecticide applied to the seed.

Dean Reed, Charlie Fontenot and Vince Deshotel after successfully planting our test plots.

We greatly appreciate the help of Dean Reed, Charlie Fontenot and Vince Deshotel in planting this demonstration test site.  Without excellent on-farm cooperators our programs would lack the depth on “real-world” situations. We will let you know when the rice emerges.

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This week we’ve continued to travel the state and meet with cooperators for the LSU AgCenter rice water weevil (rww) demonstration test. In case you are a new reader to the blog, you can read more about rww at http://bit.ly/haGduU. You can also see a video on how to scout for rice water weevil adults and larvae at this website: http://bit.ly/gUJe8R

RWW are the most important insect pest of rice in Louisiana. Adults enter fields either before or after permanent flood.  Injury begins when adults feed on plant leaves making longitudinal scars. If scarring is excessive the field will sometimes have the appearance of being “painted” with white paint. In some instances adult feeding can be severe enough to merit an insecticide spray before application of permanent flood. Mating commences soon after adults enter the field, but oviposition of eggs occurs after application of permanent flood. Larvae hatch from eggs, feed briefly within the leaf sheath, and then swim through the flood water to burrow into the mud and begin feeding on the roots of the rice plant. This larval feeding on the roots is the primary source of damage caused by rice water weevils when they attack the rice plant. In some cases, root pruning can be so severe that plants will fall over in the field. In other cases, root pruning in not severe enough to cause lodging, but can still significantly reduce yield.

The purpose of our rice water weevil demonstration test is to compare currently recommended insecticides on commercial farms in Louisiana. This year we are restricting our test to comparison of three insecticide seed treatments (CruiserMaxx, Dermacor X-100 and NipsitINSIDE) which will be compared to an untreated check. These products were described in my last blog posting, so I won’t spend a lot of time describing them here.

Yesterday we met with Farmer Charlie Fontenot, Crop Consultant Dean Reed, and County Agent Vince Deshotel in St. Landry Parish. Charlie cooperated with us last year, and his farm had the most severe rice water weevil pressure of all locations. It will be interesting to see what we find this year. Charlie intends to plant XL745 at a seeding rate of 25 lbs per acre. We will plant two passes (reps) of each seed treatment, which will be compared to an untreated check. There is a good chance that we will plan a field meeting at this site sometime later this summer. We anticipate planting in mid-March.

After we completed our discussion about demo test plans, Bruce Schultz joined us to interview Charlie Fontenot for a feature story in Louisiana Farm and Ranch. Charlie was honored as St. Landry Parish Farmer of the Year for 2010. An accomplishment that he certainly deserves. Charlie has ramped up his production over the last few years and runs a beautiful operation in St. Landry. Look for the story in next month’s issue of Louisiana Farm and Ranch.

Today we met with Farmer Wes Simon (and his son Ethan), Crop Consultant Rustin Gilder, and County Agent Barrett Courville in Acadia Parish. 

County Agent Barrett Courville, Farmer Wes Simon and I discussing plans at the field in Acadia Parish.

This is our first year working with Wes and his father Glen.  Wes intends to plant either XL729 or XL745 at a seeding rate of 22 lbs per acre. 

Wes Simon measuring out the plot size with his tractor.

The planting arrangement will be the same as at Charlie’s farm – two passes for each seed treatment which will be compared to an untreated check. Depending on the weather this weekend, Wes will probably plant sometime next week. There is a good chance we will have a tour stop here in conjunction with the LSU AgCenter south farm tour this summer.

After we left Wes, we headed over to Calcasieu Parish to meet with Farmer Mark Stelly, Landowner Johnny Hensgens, Crop Consultant Randy Verret and County Agents Jimmy Meaux and Dusty Zaunbrecher. 

County Agents Jimmy Meaux, Dusty Zaunbrecher, Farmer Mark Stelly, and Johnny Hensgens discussing plans for the demo test site.

Plans for the demo field site in this parish will be very similar to our set-up in Acadia Parish. Mark intends to plant XL745 at a seeding rate of 25 pounds per acre.  Again, depending on the weather, this site will be planted sometime before early April.

Now we are headed to Breaux Bridge for their annual winter rice production meeting at 6 pm tonight at the St. Martin Parish LSU AgCenter office. I’ll discuss seed treatments for rice water weevil management.

All photos taken by Anna Meszaros.

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