Kansas State University


Extension Entomology

Western Corn Rootworms

–by Dr. Jeff Whitworth and Dr. Holly Schwarting

Most of the corn in north central and south central Kansas is at, or just passed, the whorl stage and there seem to be very few whorl-feeding larvae.  However, the Western corn rootworm adults are just starting to emerge from the soil.

WCR adult 1

WCR adult 2

These adults were 1st detected on 23 June in Dickinson County.  These beetles are feeding on the leaf tissue as the plants are not yet tasseling or producing silk/pollen.  There is quite a disparity of rootworm life stages in this same field.  There are many adults in the northwest corner but still mostly larvae, even relatively small ones, in the southeast corner of this same field.  Some of the feeding damage caused by the rootworm larvae can be seen in the last photo.

WCR larvae

WCR larval feeding damage

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