Cotton growers know the pest as the bollworm. Corn growers call it corn earworm. Tomato growers don it tomato fruitworm. By any name, the pest is Helicoverpa zea, and it’s the first pest to develop resistance to Bacillus thuringiensis.
A New York Times article from Sunday, May 16, 2010, describes the herbicide resistance scenario I discussed in last Friday’s blog and discusses how herbicide overuse has contributed to glyphosate-resistant weeds. As he states in his conclusion, the desirable solution to the problem is the incorporation of new seeds, including unmodified seed, and the addition of cultivation practices.
Also, read today’s editorial in the Fayetteville Observer (North Carolina) about the evolution of Roundup resistant weeds in southeastern North Carolina.
When I started working at the Southern Region IPM Center in 2006, I wrote several stories of projects in the region that were in the process of completion. One of them involved a mosquito-management program in Houston, Texas. Populations of the southern house mosquito (Culex quinquefaciatus) were surviving treatments of malathion, the most widely-used pesticide to control it.