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An Invisible and Invasive Threat

Growers are underestimating the damage they can do — and their risk.


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The Dirt on Nematodes: What Are They?

Nematodes are the most abundant animals on earth.

But they’re usually so small, they’re undetectable by the human eye. In fact, plant-parasitic nematodes typically range in length from 1/60th to 1/4th of an inch.

No plant is immune. Every single plant species - including all types of corn, soybeans and cotton - has at least one species of nematode parasite.

The estimated loss in worldwide agriculture production due to nematodes.
Science Direct, Nematodes: A Threat to Sustainability of Agriculture, 2015

Hungry Travelers

Alone, nematodes migrate less than 6 inches per year. So how do they get into your fields?

Anything that moves soil, moves nematodes. Shovels, boots, farm machinery... Even the wind can transport these microscopic pests.

Once they’re there, they can cause damage by:

  • feeding on plant roots;
  • facilitating bacterial and fungal infections;
  • and transmitting viruses.

Unfortunately, killing the first generation of plant-parasitic nematodes is rarely enough to protect yields.

Many plant-parasitic nematode species can lay eggs in as little as one month. Some species’ life cycles are as short as two weeks; some are as long as two years.

Hiding in Every State

The presence of nematode species can vary based on environmental condition, soil type, and the presence or absence of actively growing plants. However, plant-parasitic nematodes can be found in corn, soybean and cotton fields - in all soil types - across the United States.

  • Corn Map
  • Soybean Map
  • Cotton Map
    • Root Knot
    • Reniform
    • Lance


Not Reported
Not Reported
Not Reported
Not Reported
Not Reported
Sources: AgriThority; 2016 nematode sampling study conducted in the U.S. Corn Belt *North Dakota State University **University of Minnesota †University of Wisconsin-Madison

An Underestimated Problem

No Above-Ground Symptoms

Sometimes, the damage plant-parasitic nematodes cause isn’t extensive enough to present any above-ground symptoms. But any damage to a plant’s root structure can be yield-inhibiting.

Damage Misattribution

When signs of damage do show up above-ground, they’re often mistaken as drought, malnutrition or disease. Typical symptoms of a nematode infestation can include wilting, yellowing and stunting.

Limited Awareness

62% of corn growers have never tested for nematodes. But 80% of all corn acres sampled in the U.S. Corn Belt have pressure. They’re widespread in soybeans and cotton, too.

Need for Species ID

Because there are so many species, it has been difficult for growers to get management recommendations without knowing exactly what types of plant-parasitic nematodes have invaded their fields.

Monsanto is Working on a Tool to Combat Nematodes

A proprietary nematicide, to be branded as NemaStrike™ Technology, is currently awaiting regulatory approvals.

Upon regulatory approvals, this seed applied solution will have a novel mode of action and low water solubility. Translation: It’s designed to stay in the root zone where nematodes attack.

Plus, it has demonstrated easy-to-use, broad-spectrum control and consistent yield protection across 3 years of testing.

Contact your dealer for more information

Consistent Yield Protection

Avg. Bu/A Corn
N = 100 Trials
Avg. Bu/A Soybeans
N = 113 Trials
Avg. Lbs. Lint/A Cotton
N = 51 Trials
Results of three year field trials across all locations and thresholds (2014, 2015, 2016) vs. competitive standard.
Individual results will vary based on nematode pressure in each field.

Select a seed brand to contact your local dealer

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