Slug warning as weather breaks

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Written by Charlotte Cunningham

With the recent wet weather in many parts of the UK, particularly in the north, leading to an increased risk of large slug populations, Hutchinsons has warned growers to be extra vigilant in monitoring crops during the vulnerable early stages of growth. Charlotte Cunningham reports. As the weather continues to break across the country, regular monitoring and judging the risk of slug damage on a field by field basis remains critical to avoid unnecessary pellet applications, while still protecting crops from slug attack, says Dr David Ellerton, Hutchinsons technical development director. “Ideally, bait trapping for potential slug problems should commence before cultivations begin. The treatment thresholds for oilseed rape are four or more slugs per trap in the previous standing cereal and one slug per trap in the previous cereal stubble. The threshold for cereals is four or more slugs per trap.” “However, trapping is only an effective means of monitoring slug activity when the soil surface is moist and slugs are active,” he adds. Therefore, he suggests an additional risk assessment for slug damage should be carried out, including impacts of the current and previous crops, field slug history, soil type, cultivations, seedbed quality, weather conditions and planting date,…
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