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WSMB Conducting Nematode Testing Again in 2017
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 04/03/2017

The Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board is again offering its expanded nematode testing program to include other pest nematodes in addition to soybean cyst nematode. These nematodes are less damaging to soybeans than SCN, but can cause enough yield loss to warrant treatment, according to State Soybean Extension Specialist Shawn Conley.

"As is the case for SCN, there are no rescue treatments for nematodes so the primary purpose of this year's soil test is to plan for next year's crop," Conley says. "Soil samples collected in corn for nematode analysis have predictive value for explaining yield if they are collected before the corn V6 growth stage. Sampling early in the season will provide information about the risk potential for the current corn crop and the next soybean crop."

Eggs of SCN persist in the soil between soybean crops so a sample can be submitted any time that is convenient. The soil test report indicates the number of eggs in the sample and is useful for selecting the right variety for the next soybean crop.

Conley says retests of fields planted with SCN-resistant varieties over multiple years shows how the nematode population is responding to variety resistance and provides an early warning should the nematode population adapt to host genetics.

The WSMB noted that pest nematodes do not threaten yield if their numbers remain low. But the key to avoiding population explosions of nematode pests is to be proactive and know what the situation is and take appropriate measures when nematode numbers indicate a problem is brewing.

For more information on SCN testing and management practices to help reduce the losses from this pest, call 608-262-7975.

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