Arizona Crop Information Site logo
University of Arizona
Vegetable IPM Updates Archive
Cooperative Extension
Impact of Bagrada Bug on Desert Cole Crops, 2010-2015 (May 25, 2016)
With the produce season finally finishing, now is a good time to reflect on pest issues from last fall. The bagrada bug, Bagrada hilaris, first occurred on desert cole crops at damaging levels in the fall of 2010, and has since become an established pest. In an attempt to document the severity of bagrada bug infestations on direct-seeded and transplanted cole crops, and the intensity of chemical management, we have annually surveyed growers and PCAs from Yuma, Imperial and Maricopa counties since 2010. We recently conducted our annual survey in April. Since 2010, the cole crop industry has experienced widespread bagrada bug infestations throughout the desert from September into November, although some years have been less intense than others. Last fall (2015) was the lightest year we’ve seen to date. Based on seasonal population abundance studies of adults infesting non-treated broccoli plants at the Yuma Ag Center (see graph below), bagrada bug infestations in the fall 2015 were lower than what we had observed since the pest first showed up in the desert. Estimates of stand losses from bagrada bug infestations at stand establishment in both direct-seeded and transplanted crops have decreased by more than 50% over the past 5 years. The lower losses reported in 2015 are likely due to the lighter bagrada pressure experienced last season. Plant injury, defined as plants with multiple heads, forked terminals, and/or blind terminals resulting from Bagrada feeding, was also lower in 2015 compared to previous years. These data suggest that PCAs have adopted effective management programs to protect seedling crops during stand establishment. Insecticide usage to control this pest remains high, and the percentage of acreage was treated in 2015 was consistent with previous years. Pyrethroids remain the primary product used for controlling bagrada bug adults either via chemigation or with foliar spray applications. Based on survey results, products that have contact activity appeared to provide the most effective control against bagrada adults on both direct-seeded and transplanted cole crops. However, more neonicotinoid products (Venom) are beginning to be implemented into the PCAs IPM programs. Overall, the results of the PCA survey are consistent with results obtained in research trials conducted at the Yuma Agricultural Center over the past four years. A summary of the 2010-2015 survey results can be found in the following report: Impact of Bagrada Bug on Desert Cole Crops, 2010-2015.


Name this Insect Pest. - Syrphid Fly

Remember, When in Doubt . . . . . “SCOUT”

Click picture to listen to John’s update video link

To contact John Palumbo go to:

For questions or comments on any of the topics please contact Marco Pena at the Yuma Agricultural Center.
College of Agriculture, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.

Home | Cotton | Veggies | Forages | Grains | Citrus | Crop x Crop
Insects | Diseases| Weeds | Pesticides | Economics | News | Weather | Research | Photos | Contacts | General Info.

Copyright © 2001 University of Arizona,
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Webmaster: Al Fournier (