Videos on Soybean Cyst Nematode Testing Available Online

December 1st, 2008

AMES, Iowa - Two videos featuring an Iowa State University plant pathology professor are featured on the Corn and Soybean Digest magazine's Web site. 

Greg Tylka is an extension plant pathologist and nematologist, plus coordinator of Iowa State's Corn and Soybean Initiative. In the videos, he demonstrates how to test for soybean cyst nematodes (SCN). The most recent video has Tylka showing the proper way to do soil sampling after harvest in both soybean and corn fields.

"It will be possible to conduct soil samples for SCN testing for a few more weeks, until there is persistent snow cover or the top eight inches of soil are frozen," Tylka said. "Fall is the ideal time to collect soil samples to determine if SCN eggs are present. This gives the producer time to make important management decisions before spring."

Once a soybean field has been planted, the next opportunity to scout for SCN begins about six weeks after planting and runs through August. In a video produced earlier this year, Tylka demonstrated how to dig soybean plants and gently remove soil from the roots in search of small white "dots" that are female soybean cyst nematodes.

"Research has shown plants in a soybean field can look perfectly healthy, yet still be infected by SCN," Tylka said. "That's why it's important for producers to check for SCN, either during the growing season or after harvest. Knowing which fields are infested with SCN is the first step to successfully managing the nematode. These videos will help producers properly test for this pest, which is causing serious yield losses across the Midwest and elsewhere."

Personnel in the ISU College of Agriculture and Life Sciences produced the videos. The videos are posted on the Corn and Soybean Digest CSDLive feature on the magazine's Web site here.

Contacts: 

Greg Tylka, Plant Pathology, (515) 294-3021, gltylka@iastate.edu

Susan Thompson, Agriculture and Life Sciences Communication Service, (515) 294-0705, sander@iastate.edu

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