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Will A Warm Winter Bother The Bugs?

Iowa State has an interesting paper out musing over the question of whether the warm winter will affect the bug population.  They aren't sure.  On one hand,  a warm winter might let more bad ones live but it might let more good ones live, too.  It might start the bad ones out early so they arrive before they normal time and that may affect how they affect us.  That brings up the question of when you start counting GDU for bugs.  It's enough to drive you buggy.

 

http://www.extension.iastate.edu/CropNews/2012/0217hodgsonjesse.htm 

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2 Replies

Re: Will A Warm Winter Bother The Bugs?

Jim, here in northern iowa we have had a mild, open winter with a few dips down to single digits and just below zero. There is and has been some level of frozen soil for 2-3 months. I would say that this and the freezing and thawing of the open soil will do more to hinder insect activity than a very cold winter with heavy snow pack. We've had a couple of those ,in recent years, where it might be -20 but much of the soil still unfrozen because of the snowpack insulation. this all said, it would seem (and many agree) that central iowa's weather is always much milder than ours. I guess it would be hard to put this whole issue into one category.

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Re: Will A Warm Winter Bother The Bugs?

A mild winter usually means a better mortality rate for turkey deer and pheasants also.  Then more bugs for the offspring, does this mean a better mortality rate for them?  Maybe it is time to get the spring turkey license in hand.  Like I have said before, there are two ways to harvest the crop, with a combine or off the hoof with a smoke pole!

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