Canola Watch Exam 2020 – Section 6 – Insect pest management

This is the sixth of seven sections for this year’s Canola Watch annual CCA/CCSC exam. By dividing the exam into seven separate sections, we are giving CCAs and CCSCs the opportunity to customize the exam based on credits they need and to take some in 2020 and some in 2021.

Those who achieve 70 per cent or better on this section will qualify for 1 CEU (CCA or CCSC) in Integrated Pest Management.

Credits will be applied in either 2020 or 2021, depending on when you pass this section. For those who pass, Canola Watch will submit your name and number to the program to have the credits counted.

When writing this self-study exam, note that all answers can be found in Canola Watch articles as well as Canola Watch videos, podcasts and Canola Encyclopedia and Canola Digest links from 2020. You can find the Issue Archives as well as the video and podcast libraries under the “Canola Watch” tab at the top of

For questions or additional information on this exam, please contact Jay Whetter at 807-468-4006 or

Canola in Canada faces potential yield loss from a number of insect pests, including flea beetles, cutworms, diamondback moth larvae, bertha armyworm, cabbage seedpod weevil and lygus bugs. Effective pest management is all about proper scouting at the right time and making pest management decisions based on economic thresholds. CCAs and CCSCs completing this section will pick up tips from 2020 experiences and build upon their understand of integrated pest management (IPM)

REQUIRED - Your full name:

Your CCA number: (Leave blank if not applicable)

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REQUIRED - What region best describes your work territory?
1. You will find lots of interesting information about flea beetle behaviour in a podcast posted May 21. (Find all podcasts here.) One tidbit is how far flea beetles can travel for food. It hasn’t been specifically examined, but there is anecdotal evidence of flights _________. Fill in the blank.
2. The May 27 quiz on flea beetles asks this question: The existing generation of adult flea beetles can remain active until the middle of June. At what stage has the crop basically grown past the threat?
3. The last question in the same quiz describes four situations that can increase the economic risk from flea beetles. Three situations are low plant counts, stresses that slow plant growth, and wind that forces flea beetles to feed lower on the plant. What is the fourth?
4. A late May insect update links to the Canola Encyclopedia chapter on cutworms. The section on Management says: “Nominal thresholds of 25 to 30 per cent stand reduction have been suggested. Additional information for pale western, redbacked and darksided cutworms indicates an economic threshold of ______ larvae per square metre.” Fill in the blank.
5. Episode 17 of the Canola Watch agronomy video series is on “Cabbage seedpod weevil”. (Find all episodes here.) For scouting, the video recommends four sets of 10 sweeps, collected in two paired locations in each field. If weevils exceed thresholds and you need to spray, why is spraying after 20 per cent flowering stage too late?
6. A July article on pod eaters provides scouting tips and economic spray thresholds for the three most common pod feeders in canola. They are bertha armyworm, diamondback moth larvae and what other insect?
7. The July 22 quiz features five beneficial insects that prey on common canola pests. What pest insect does this little wasp help to keep below economic thresholds?

8. Episode 21 of the Canola Watch agronomy video series is on bertha armyworm scouting. (Find the full video series here.) It provides some helpful tips and visuals on how to scout. According to the video, what should you do after moving leaf litter and trash away and just before you start to count?
9. The Canola Encyclopedia chapter on Integrated Pest Management was updated in 2020 to include the “Scouting Toolkit”. You will find this a handy shopping list. One item is the sweep net. Two canola pest insects have thresholds based on sweep net counts. One is lygus. What is the other?
10. Flea beetles were the big insect pest in 2020 and they showed up again in big numbers later in the summer. An August article, “Insect update: Spray or not?”, says entomologists have not set thresholds for late season flea beetle feeding, but the amount could be _______ before economic losses occur. Fill in the blank.