University of Kentucky College of Agriculture


This page contains information about the sugarcane aphid (Melanaphis sacchari) in Kentucky. The insect has been found in sorghum fields in Allen, Caldwell, Calloway, Carlisle, Crittenden, Fulton , Graves, Henderson, Hopkins, Livingston, Lyon, McLean, and Webster counties (orange). If you suspect that the sugarcane aphid is present in a county not marked on the map, please take a sample to your County Cooperative Extension office or send it to the UK Department of Entomology, S-225 Ag Science North, Lexington, KY 40546-0091.

Identifying the Sugarcane aphid

Sugarcane aphids are small, pale insects with a pair of dark tubes (cornicles) extending from the top rear of the abdomen. The feet and antennae of the insect also are dark.

Photo: S. Armstrong, USDA-ARS

The blue-green to gray corn leaf aphid is the species most likely to be found on grain sorghum in Kentucky. There is a dark spot at the base of each cornicle and the legs also are dark.

Potential Impact in Kentucky

Sap feeding by large numbers of sugarcane aphids can reduce plant vigor and grain yields. The liquid waste (honeydew) that they produce makes leaves sticky, casuing harvest loss and harm to equipment. The nutirent rich waste suppoorts growth of sooty mold which can coat the leaves and reduce photosyntheisis..

Management

Follow this link to scouting procedures and treatment guidelines.

Most of the insecticides labeled for use on sorghum provide poor control of SCA. Lorsban, dimethoate, and malathion are registered for control of aphids on grain sorghum but are not as effective against SCA as the newer products.

Sivanto 200 SL (Bayer) label may be applied at 7 day intervals at 4-7 oz. per acre with a maximum use of 28 oz. per acre for the whole season. It has a pre-harvest interval of 21 days for dried grain, straw orstover and 7 days for grazing, forage, fodder, or hay. This product may be used against SCA based on the manufacturer’s 2ee recommendation. This use is based on a 2ee label issued by Bayer. Applicators must have a copy of the label in hand when making applications.

Section 2ee label for Sivanto 200 SL

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Last Updated: This page is maintained by Lee Townsend, Department of Entomology, University of Kentucky. Please send questions or suggestions to: Lee.Townsend@uky.edu