Other Pests You May See—Seedling Stage (Cotyledons to 4 leaves)

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Arthropods Diseases/Nematodes
  • Darkling beetles (not in desert)
  • Leafminer
  • Seedcorn maggot
  • Wireworms (especially on transplants)
  • Armyworms
  • Root rots (damping off)
  • Root knot nematode

Names link to information on identification and management.

Click on photos to enlarge
Darkling beetle adult.
Darkling beetle adult
Identification tip: Adults vary from black or bluish black to rusty brown. Do not confuse with predatory ground beetles, which prey on various soil-dwelling pests.
Adult leafminer feeding punctures (bottom) and mines (top).
Leafminer damage
Identification tip: A larva mines between the upper and lower leaf surfaces, creating winding white tunnels that widen as the larva grows.
Larva (top), prepupa (left), and pupae (center) of seedcorn maggot.
Seedcorn maggots
Identification tip: The seedcorn maggot is the larva of a small, light gray fly. The whitish, legless maggots are about 1/3 inch long and attack planted seeds.
Identification tip: Larvae are shiny, slender, cylindrical, hard-bodied, and yellow to brown.
Larva of western yellowstriped armyworm.
Identification tip: The larva is almost black, with two prominent and many fine, bright yellow stripes on the side.
Stunted cucumber seedlings in a field infested with southern root knot nematodes.
Root knot nematode damage
Identification tip: Feeding stunts seedlings and causes galls or knots on roots.
The tap root and lower stem are shriveled and darkened in seedlings affected by damping-off (right).
Root rots (damping off) (Pythium spp., Acremonium spp., Rhizoctonia solani, Phytophthora spp.)
Identification tip: Symptoms include the browning or reddening of the hypocotyl, hypocotyl collapse, and plant stunting.

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