Ashley Dean

Ashley is an education extension specialist for field crop entomology at Iowa State University. She coordinates the Iowa Moth Trapping Network, the Regional Corn Rootworm Monitoring Network, and the Iowa Pest Alert Network. She also develops educational resources for field crop pests in Iowa and aids in the research efforts of the Soybean Research Laboratory. Her expertise is integrated pest management of insect pests and general agronomy. She received both her B.S. in Agronomy and M.S. in Entomology from Iowa State University prior to this role.

July 9, 2024 11:02 AM

Corn is beginning to tassel and there are fields with small ears, which means pollination is just around the corner. Corn pollen is highly attractive to many insect pests, so it is a good idea to assess pollination rates once reproductive development starts. This could be especially complicated...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
June 24, 2024 2:32 PM

European corn borer, known as “the billion-dollar bug,” was a pest of economic concern in the United States prior to the commercialization of Bt corn hybrids in 1996. With the widespread adoption of Bt traits, European corn borer populations have been effectively managed and areawide suppression...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
June 5, 2024 2:36 PM

The trapping season for black cutworm (BCW) has come to an end. We appreciate our cooperators for tirelessly checking traps the last two months and reporting their captures so we can provide the most accurate scouting information for these pests. To recap, we had 25 volunteers participate from...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 29, 2024 9:24 AM

Moth flights into Iowa were drastically reduced during Week 8 (May 19 to May 25), partly because of fewer moths but also likely due to the fact that recent storms took out several traps across the state. Our cooperators recorded only 51 black cutworm (BCW) moths and, for the first time since...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 22, 2024 9:44 AM

Black cutworm (BCW) moth flights seemed to wind down a bit during Week 7 (May 12 to May 18). Our cooperators recorded 106 BCW moths around the state. Only one significant flight (Buena Vista County, May 14) occurred during Week 7, which is a big change from previous weeks where several...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 15, 2024 9:57 AM

Week 6 (May 5 to May 11) brought fewer moths into Iowa than the previous week, but cooperators still recorded 135 black cutworm (BCW) moths around the state. Five significant flights occurred last week, adding to the numerous significant flights that have already occurred this season.

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 14, 2024 2:00 PM

Western and northern corn rootworms are serious corn pests in Iowa and the Corn Belt. These pests readily adapt to management tactics, especially in continuous corn production. The larvae consume corn roots, thereby reducing nutrient and water uptake, and cause stalk lodging. The adults may also...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 7, 2024 3:53 PM

For the second year in a row, alfalfa weevil is the most prominent spring pest for farmers. Unprecedented populations south of I-80 have been reported in 2024 and are proving to be much more severe and widespread than in previous years. We are predicting northern Iowa counties to also experience...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 7, 2024 11:52 AM

Black cutworm moth captures spiked again during Week 5 (April 28 to May 4). A total of 182 BCW moths were reported by our cooperators during Week 5. The most moths were reported on April 29 (81 moths), but captures were scattered throughout the week. Six significant flights occurred last week,...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 1, 2024 9:46 AM

Last week (April 21 to April 27) had a few windy days that likely brought many moths into Iowa, but numbers were lower than Week 3. A total of 109 BCW moths were reported by our cooperators during Week 4. Most of those moths were reported between April 23 and April 25. Six significant flights...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
April 24, 2024 12:51 PM

Windy conditions last week (April 14 to April 20) brought a lot of black cutworm (BCW) moths into Iowa. A total of 157 BCW moths were reported by our cooperators during Week 3. April 17 had the most total moths reported (50 moths), but captures were consistent throughout the week. Ten...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
April 17, 2024 1:49 PM

Moth counts ramped up dramatically during Week 2 of the moth trapping network (April 7 to April 13), although we often get large flights with spring storm systems in April. Despite the low captures reported during the first official week, 70 total black cutworm (BCW) moths were reported last...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
April 10, 2024 11:14 AM

The 2024 moth trapping season is underway, and our volunteers began placing traps the week of March 24. Black cutworm (BCW) monitoring is a long-standing project in Iowa to detect moths migrating from southern overwintering sites each spring. By monitoring adult black cutworms, we can provide...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
February 12, 2024 2:32 PM

Iowa State University’s IPM Team has monitored field crop pests for a long time. The pests have changed over the years, but the goal is the same: to help inform farmers about pest activity in Iowa. Our moth trapping efforts target black cutworm, which is a migratory moth. Since timing of arrival...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
July 14, 2023 11:51 AM

Blister beetles are an occasional late-summer problem in Iowa alfalfa fields. The beetles feed on alfalfa and soybean foliage, but leaf loss is not of economic importance. The bigger concern with blister beetles is their toxicity to livestock when accidentally consumed in feed. The beetles...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
June 15, 2023 11:51 AM

On June 14, Iowa State University extension entomologists put out a Pest Alert to scout for true armyworm because of statewide reports of this pest feeding on crops. In addition, there have been multiple...

Insects and Mites
June 9, 2023 2:26 PM

We have had a busy few weeks fielding questions from farmers and agronomists about various insects that are feeding in crop fields. Temperatures have been warm and that has prompted many insects to resume activity – they are hungry! The biggest concern lately has been true armyworms, but other...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
June 6, 2023 11:06 AM

The trapping season for true armyworm (TAW) and black cutworm (BCW) has come to an end. We appreciate our cooperators for tirelessly checking traps the last two months and reporting their captures so we can provide the most accurate scouting information for these pests. To recap, we had 31...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 25, 2023 10:23 AM

Moth flights into Iowa slowed down a bit during Week 7 (May 14 to May 20). Cooperators for the Iowa Moth Trapping Network reported 147 black cutworm (BCW) and 130 true armyworm (TAW) moths, with three new significant flights of black cutworm. More details on significant flights and cutting dates...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 25, 2023 7:54 AM

Alfalfa growth is off to the races in many parts of Iowa, and we have heard reports from around the state that insects are very active in alfalfa as well. Field agronomists, especially in southern Iowa, have...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 19, 2023 11:03 AM

Western and northern corn rootworms are serious corn pests in Iowa and the Corn Belt. These pests readily adapt to management tactics, especially in continuous corn production. The larvae consume corn roots, thereby reducing nutrient and water uptake, and cause stalk lodging. The adults may also...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
May 18, 2023 1:13 PM

Week 6 (May 7 to May 13) of the Iowa Moth Trapping Network was vastly different than the week before. Our cooperators reported 239 black cutworm (BCW) and 295 true armyworm (TAW) moths, with several significant flights occurring around the state.

Recall that we predicted...

Insects and Mites
May 9, 2023 3:13 PM

Very few moths were reported by our cooperators last week. During week 5 of the Iowa Moth Trapping Network (April 30 to May 6), our cooperators reported 41 black cutworm (BCW) and 32 true armyworm (TAW) moths around the state, and there were no new significant flights of BCW to report. However,...

Insects and Mites
May 3, 2023 12:10 PM

Fewer moths were reported last week than in previous weeks, but even so, the northward migration of two pest species continues. During week 4 of the Iowa Moth Trapping Network (April 23 to April 29), our cooperators reported 71 black cutworm (BCW) and 85 true armyworm (TAW) moths around the...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites
April 26, 2023 11:51 AM

Even with some cooler weather last week, moths continue to migrate northward into Iowa. During week 3 of the Iowa Moth Trapping Network (April 16 to April 22), our cooperators reported 83 black cutworm (BCW) and 110 true armyworm (TAW) moths around the state. Three additional significant flights...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites

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