Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs – Facts for Fancy Fruit

Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs

Last year some apple growers reported damage from brown marmorated stink bugs, particularly in the northern counties. BMSB will also attack peaches and other fruit, as well as a number of vegetables. Now is the time that growers should be watching for BMSB and its damage. There are a number of commercially available traps that will help you to detect them. I suggest that you put one or more of these traps in several different areas of your orchard, depending on the size of your farm. The more spread out your plantings, the more traps you should put out. If you catch BMSB in your trap, you should begin inspecting your trees for either the bugs or signs of their feeding, which is puncture wounds in the fruit. Often, the damage will not be apparent for a couple of weeks after feeding, so the presence of the bugs in the traps or trees may be the better indicator. Some products that have been found effective include many of the pyrethroids (Capture, Warrior, Danitol), as well as some of the neonicotinoids (Actara, Assail, Belay, Venom/Scorpion) and an older product, Lannate. As I described in my article in the March 30 edition of FFF, products like the pyrethroids are likely to cause European red mite outbreaks as a result of killing the predators that normally keep the European red mites under control. However, the potential losses from BMSB and the availability of a suite of very effective miticides demands that growers control BMSB first and deal with the consequences (mite outbreaks) later if they occur.

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