Researcher Kiran Shetty is deeply involved in wireworm research with test plots in the Palouse area of Washington and other sites around the PNW.
Part of the research involved in testing various seed treatments to fight the pest includes baiting for the pest in plots to determine overall populations. Shetty demonstrated the procedure for a group of ag journalists and farm consultants recently on a trip to fields near St. John, Wash.
Shetty says wireworms are beginning to return to many fields treated long ago with the now-banned chemical heptachlor. The residues of that chlorinated hydrocarbon are beginning to fall to sub-lethal levels for wireworms, hence the increase in numbers across the northern U.S.
In addition to seed treatments, Syngenta researchers are finding cultural methods to help alleviate wireworm damage in PNW fields.