Seedcorn Maggots and Wireworms

​I have received calls about seedcorn maggots in melons and have seen wireworm damage in my research plots in Vincennes. Seedcorn maggots are usually associated with cool weather since the adult flies will not lay their eggs near melons plants when the soil temperature exceeds 70°F. So the cool weather we have had this past week could promote seedcorn maggot problems. One of the species of wireworms I observed is Conoderus lividus, a species commonly associated with corn. If you are planting melons after corn, the field could be infested with wireworms, although frankly this is fairly rare. You can determine the potential for wireworm problems prior to planting by burying a cup of flour or untreated grain (corn or wheat) about 6 inches under the ground. Come back and dig up the bait in about a week and look for wireworms. About the only product melon growers have available for either seedcorn maggots or wireworms that is effective is Capture LFR®. This product is not great for control of either pest, but will provide reasonable levels of control.

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