Scaffolds Fruit Journal, Cornell University NYSAES

Insects | Credits

Volume 6, No. 15				  June 30, 1997


                                                     43F       50F
Current DD accumulations (Geneva 1/1-6/30):        1206       739     
                       (Highland 1/1-6/30):        1395       853

Coming Events:                              Ranges:
Comstock mealybug 1st adult catch              1270-1673  756-1105
Oriental fruit moth 2nd flight begins          1152-1819  772-1215
Spotted tentiform leafminer 2nd flight peak   1295-2005   824-1355
Lesser appleworm 2nd flight begins            1152-2302   778-1531
American plum borer 1st flight subsides         848-1668  440-1205
Obliquebanded leafroller eggs hatch            1076-1513   630-980
Apple maggot 1st catch                         1045-1671  629-1078
Codling moth 1st flight subsides               1112-2118  673-1395
Redbanded leafroller 2nd flight begins         1198-2029  804-1381

   Geneva: Spotted tentiform leafminer 2nd flight began 6/23.  DD(base 43F) = 230. 
 Highland: Spotted tentiform leafminer 2nd flight began 6/16.  DD(base 43F) = 332.

TRAP CATCHES (Number/trap/day)
                                  6/16   6/19   6/23   6/26   6/30
Redbanded Leafroller                 0      0      0    0.2      0
Spotted Tentiform Leafminer          8      6     28    175    406
Lesser Appleworm                   1.4    2.0    0.4      0      0
Oriental Fruit Moth (apple)        1.0    1.2    0.4    0.2    0.1
Oriental Fruit Moth (peach)        0.1      0      0      0      0
San Jose Scale                     0.1    0.3    0.4      0      0
Codling Moth                       6.0    5.2    2.5    1.2    0.8
American Plum Borer                2.4    1.2    1.1    1.0    0.6
Lesser Peachtree Borer             3.4    0.8    2.6    2.0    1.6
Peachtree Borer                    2.0    1.2    3.9    8.5    2.0
Pandemis Leafroller                0.8*   0.7    1.4    0.3    0.5
Obliquebanded Leafroller             0    0.5*   3.3    2.7    0.6
Apple maggot                         0      0      0      0      0

Highland (Dick Straub, Peter Jentsch):
                                   6/2    6/9   6/16   6/23   6/27
Redbanded Leafroller               0.4    0.1      0      0    0.9
Spotted Tentiform Leafminer        5.6    0.1    7.4   74.0   39.4
Oriental Fruit Moth                1.1    1.2    1.4    0.3    0.9
Lesser Appleworm                   1.3    1.6    1.3    0.4    2.0
Codling Moth                       1.6    1.7    1.6    5.6    2.6
Fruittree Leafroller                 0      0      0      0      0
Tufted Apple Budmoth                 0    2.9*   2.0    1.3    2.9
Obliquebanded Leafroller             0    0.2*   1.8    0.9    0.3
Sparganothis Fruitworm               0    0.1*     0    1.3    1.4

                                                       * = 1st catch



by Art Agnello & Dave Kain
Entomology, Geneva

The first adult males of the season should begin to appear soon in pheromone traps, so it shouldn't be long before we start seeing some adult females in pear foliage, followed by their invasive crawler offspring. We realize that the Bartlett fruit set is down considerably this season, but for those who do have a crop and don't want it threatened by mealybug infestations, the crawlers are the most susceptible stage for chemical control, which we expect sometime during the next couple of weeks, especially in the Hudson Valley.

The following information is taken from the Comstock Mealybug IPM Fact Sheet, No. 22:

There are two generations of Comstock mealybug in New York, each taking 60 to 90 days to complete, depending on seasonal temperatures. The egg is generally thought to be the primary overwintering stage, but some nymphs and adult females from the second (summer) generation may also overwinter, with eggs being laid in the spring rather than the previous fall. Adult females and males emerge at the same time, from late June to mid-July for the first (overwintering) generation, and late August to mid-September for the second (summer) generation. Adult females are present for a total of 4-6 weeks, and oviposit for about one week after mating. Males survive for only a few days after emerging.

Comstock mealybug adult male

The elongate, orange-yellow eggs are laid in jumbled masses along with waxy filamentous secretions in protected places such as under bark crevices, near pruning cuts, and occasionally in the calyx of fruit. The summer-generation eggs are laid from mid-June through late July, and the overwintering eggs from mid-August into October.

Eggs of Comstock mealybug

The early larval instars of the CMB are similar to adult females (wingless and elongate-oval in shape, with a many-segmented body) except that they are smaller, more oval-shaped, lack the long body filaments, and are orange-yellowish because they have less wax covering. Later instars are similar in appearance, but become progressively browner and redder.

Comstock mealybug crawler on bark

The overwintered eggs hatch from mid-April through May and the nymphs (crawlers) migrate from the oviposition sites to their feeding sites on terminal growth and leaf undersides of trees and shrubs. This hatch is completed by the petal fall stage of pears. Nymphs that hatch from these overwintered eggs are active from roughly early May to early July. As the nymphs approach the adult stage, they tend to congregate on older branches at a pruning scar, a node, or at a branch base, as well as inside the calyx of pears. Second- (summer) generation nymphs are present from about mid-July to mid-September.

The Comstock mealybug poses two major concerns for the pear processing industry of New York: First, the emergence of crawlers and adult females from the calyx of pears at the packinghouse creates a nuisance to workers. Second, pears to be made into puree typically are not peeled or cored by New York processors, so infestations can potentially result in unacceptable contamination of the product.

Adult Comstock mealybug females in pear calyx

Another problem, of concern to apple growers in the 1930s and 1940s, and again in the Hudson and Champlain Valleys in the early 1980s, is that the honeydew secreted by the crawlers is a substrate for sooty molds growing on the fruit surface. This problem also occurs on peaches in Ontario, Canada. These molds result in a downgrading of the fruit, and are therefore an additional cause of economic loss.

Sooty mold on apple growing on honeydew secreted by Comstock mealybug crawlers

To date, the Comstock mealybug has been a problem to growers of processing pears because of the contamination and aesthetic reasons noted. An infestation generally requires one or more insecticide sprays during the growing season, directed against the migrating crawlers. Examine the terminal growth for crawler activity periodically throughout the summer. Crawler and adult female activity can also be monitored by wrapping black electrical or white carpet tape around low scaffold branches and inspecting for crawlers that have been caught by the tape. They can be recognized with a hand lens or, with some experience, by the unaided eye.

Tape trap for monitoring comstock mealybug crawlers

Comstock mealybug nymphs stuck on tape trap

Sometime in early August, when we detect crawlers in some problem blocks we are monitoring, we'll advise an application of a material such as Penncap-M, Provado, Diazinon, Lannate, or (on apples only) Lorsban to control this insect.


Dogwood borers should be laying eggs in susceptible apple orchards now (those with succulent burrknot tissue or suckers). The larva of this clearwing moth feeds on apple trees, primarily on burrknot tisse on clonal rootstocks. Burrknots are aggregations of root initials that can develop on the above-ground portion of the rootstock; all commercial dwarfing and semi-dwarfing rootstocks have a tendency to develop burrknots. Some chemicals with hormone effects, such as NAA, can increase the expression of burrknots, as will failure to keep the area around the trunk weed-free and open to sunlight. White latex paint brushed on the exposed portion of the rootstock will prevent new infestations of the borers, and also protect against southwest injury to the bark. Dilute trunk applications of an insecticide with good residual activity can provide control of established infestations. At this point in the season, a spray of Lorsban 50WP or Thiodan 50WP would be the most effective materials if applied anytime until Aug. 15, bearing in mind the specific pre-harvest intervals.


The typical summer temperatures of the last week have moved some of the earliest OBLR sites into the 360+ DD window that we estimate to be the time of first hatch (in western N.Y.; this occurred over a week ago in the Hudson Valley). Growers electing a Confirm program for OBLR control this year should definitely have their first application on by this point. Those waiting for a scouting decision to apply a treatment have until the DD total reaches 600 (base 43 F) for the recommended sampling time. The OBLR DD totals we've calculated as of this morning, 6/30, are given below; note that the peak hatch rate (25% of total) is predicted at 450 DD; 50% hatch comes at 630 DD, and 720 DD marks the median development point of the earliest emerging larvae:

SITE              FIRST CATCH       DD TOTAL     
Highland             June 9           
Knowlesville        June 16               (Waterport)        
Geneva              June 17           
Wolcott             June 19               (Sodus)

Scaffolds is published weekly from March to September by Cornell University - NYS Agricultural Experiment Station (Geneva), and Ithaca - with the assistance of Cornell Cooperative Extension. New York field reports welcomed. Send submissions by 3 p.m. Monday to:

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Photographs courtesy of New York State Integrated Pest Management Program