Entomologist provides tips for dealing with grain pests

BROOKINGS, S.D. (WNAX) – Dealing with stored grain pests can be a challenge for farmers in the Northern Plains. SDSU Extension Field Crop Entomologist Adam (vair-en-horst) Varenhorst says a good rule of thumb to follow is to not store grain for more than one year and to not store new grain on top of old grain. He says making sure grain bins are clean and that the grain is treated prior to going into storage.

He says it’s usually better to have professionals handle treating grain pests and to avoid using fumigant insecticides as once the canister is opened and the air hits them, it becomes active.

Varenhorst says a good way to control grain pests is by pretreating or using protectant insecticides.

Varenhorst says the two most common types of grain pests South Dakota farmers deal with are those internal feeders that destroy the grain itself. The other are the external feeders which feed on cracked kernels, dust from the grain and debris in the bin itself as well as in some cases the fungus.