facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Global warning might increase corn pests

Dec. 16, 2008 at 1:16 PM   |   Comments

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., Dec. 16 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists say climate change could produce warmer growing seasons that could result in an increase in pests that feed on corn and other crops.

Warmer growing seasons and milder winters could allow some insects to expand their territory and produce an extra generation of offspring each year, said Purdue University Associate Professor Noah Diffenbaugh.

"The greatest potential range expansion was seen with the corn earworm, which is known to infest other high-value crops such as sweet corn and tomatoes," said Diffenbaugh, interim director of the Purdue Climate Change Research Center. "Warming could allow populations to survive the winter in the upper Midwest … as well as areas of the West where other high-value crops are grown."

Diffenbaugh noted the United States contributes nearly half of the world's total corn production.

"The world depends on U.S corn production for a variety of uses," he said. "Ethanol production and a growing world population are increasing demand for corn. Expansion of the pests' ranges could have substantial impacts through decreased yields and increased costs for seed and pest management."

The research that included Purdue Professors Christian Krupke and Corinne Alexander, as well as Michael White from Utah State University, was recently published in the online edition of the journal Environmental Research Letters.

© 2008 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
Physicists teleport photon over 15 miles Physicists teleport photon over 15 miles
2
Android phones to join iPhone in saying no to the police Android phones to join iPhone in saying no to the police
3
New research suggests China's CO2 output is almost twice U.S.'s New research suggests China's CO2 output is almost twice U.S.'s
4
WATCH: SpaceX is not only taking a 3D printer to space, but mice too WATCH: SpaceX is not only taking a 3D printer to space, but mice too
5
Major palm oil companies to halt deforestation Major palm oil companies to halt deforestation
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback