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Cotton Insect Loss Estimates – 2003

Michael R. Williams


Arthropod pests reduced overall yield by 4.16% in 2003. There were 13.63 million acres of cotton planted in 2003, but only 12.11 million acres harvested. Oklahoma at 11.72% reported the greatest percentage loss to insects in 2003. The bollworm/budworm complex was the top pest of 2003 taking 1.39% of the 2003 crop. Almost 74% of the US crop was infested with the complex of which 86% were bollworms. No other pest exceeded 1% reduction. Fifty-three percent (53%) of US cotton acres was infested by Lygus which reduced yields by 0.897%. Stink bugs were third at 0.735% and cotton fleahoppers were fourth at 0.322% reduction. Thrips infested 92% of US cotton acres and reduced yields by 0.261%. Spider mites at 0.122% were 6th infesting 2.8 million acres. Aphids (0.094%) were 7th in the pest ranking and fall armyworms followed closely behind at 0.093% reduction. Boll weevils at 0.077% were 9th infesting 2.097 million acres. Silverleaf whitefly (0.053%), complete the top ten insect pests of 2003. Total cost of management and loss to insects to the 2003 crop was $1.076 billion or $85.51 per acre. Of those costs approximately $59 are direct insect management costs.

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Document last modified 04/27/04