According to Purdue’s moth trap report, black cutworm moth numbers are high and scouting on corn that is emerged should be happening now. The southern half of the state is already seeing some of the effects of black cutworm. The use of systemic insecticides and certain genetic packages can suppress numbers, but will not control a heavy population of cutworms.
To scout, we suggest looking at 1 location every 20 acres, looking at 20 plants at each location. When 3 to 5% of plants are damaged and larvae are found, insecticide should be applied. There are many options for controlling black cutworm, and it doesn’t take much damage to pay for the insecticide treatment. Before spraying, I suggest scouting your fields to make sure there is a problem.