Entomologists believe this is a new pest in the Rio Grande Valley, first detected here in October, 2013. The 2014 spring-planted sorghum crop will be the first time we experience what this pest will do in that crop season-long. Do not confuse this insect with the Yellow Sugarcane Aphid, this is something new.
note: Thus far, in spite of it’s name, the Sugarcane Aphid has not been found on sugarcane, other than feeding on Johnsongrass in sugarcane fields.
Check your fields!! This insect has the potential to cause severe economic yield loss to grain sorghum and may warrant treatment.
Sugarcane Aphid (Extension publication, 2/2014)
Sugarcane Aphid (PowerPoint in PDF format with notes attached on most pages, Author: Villanueva, 1/2014)
Section 18 for Transform EPA has authorized a Section 18 to TDA for the use of Transform WG (sulfoxaflor) on sorghum to control sugarcane aphid (Melanaphis sacchari) as of April 24, 2014. Foliar applications may be made by ground or air at a rate of 0.75- 1.5 oz of product per acre. It is recommended that you use the higher rate or at least 1 oz per acre. A maximum of 2 applications per acre per year may be made, resulting in a seasonal maximum application rate of 3 ounces of product per acre per year. There is a minimal application retreatment interval of 14 days and a restricted entry interval (REI) of 24 hours. A 7 day pre-harvest interval (PHI) for forage and a 14 day PHI for grain or stover must be observed. The exemption to use this product expires October 31, 2014. Remember to follow all label restrictions. The Section 18 Transform WG label and EPA authorization letter is posted on the TDA website available for growers to make a copy.
Pest Cast Newsletter (Danielle Sekula Ortiz has done an outstanding job of keeping growers informed of this new pest in her weekly newsletter. There has been an update in each 2014 issue)