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June 2012: True Armyworm infestations have been reported in eastern and western NY.

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True armyworm (aka Common armyworm) larvae are being found across New York State. They do not overwinter in New York, but fly north from states to our south in the spring. Armyworm moth migrations are somewhat sporadic, cyclic from year to year, and difficult to predict. Our last notable infestations in New York occurred in 2001 and 2008. True armyworms are primarily a pest of plants in the grass family: forage / pasture /grasses & lawns, small grains and corn.

True armyworm larvae appear smooth, cylindrical, pale green to brownish when they are still small. Mature larvae are smooth and marked with two orange, white-bordered strips on each side. Larvae range in size from 1/8 inch to 1 1/2 inches long.

Photos

early instar true armyworms

Young true armyworm larvae collected 7.18.12 from grass hay field in Jefferson County NY.
pseudaletia unipunct
Pseudaletia unipuncta, photo by James Kalisch, University of Nebraska, Bugwood.org

 

armyworms in wheat
True army worm in wheat 6.8.12 Reed Rd Genev, NY. Photo by Keith Waldron, NYS IPM.

 

armyworms in orchardgrass
Armyworm in orchard grass next to wheat field, Geneva, NY. 6.10.12 Photo by Keith Waldron, NYS IPM.

 

Video

Armyworms infesting a wheat field:

Armyworms on a road:

 

Read about the armyworm infestation:

Second Generation Armyworms are here! July 24, 2012

True Armyworm - Second generation found in western and northern New York July 20, 2012

Armyworms invade New York crops, plants July 2, 2012

Armyworms in Lawns—Update 6-18-12, 125k pdf file

IPM, Cornell on front lines of armyworm invasion

True Armyworm (aka Common armyworm) Alert—Update 6-15-12, 145k pdf file

Articles in recent Field Crops Weekly Pest Reports

Armyworms Invade Western New York, from the Cornell Turfgrass Blog

Armyworms and Cutworms in Turf, 2.7 Mb pdf file from Utah State Univ.