Seminole Crop E News

Agricultural News for Farmers and Agribusiness in SW Georgia

Spider Mites in Peanuts

Posted by romeethredge on July 29, 2014

Spider mites are building in peanuts. High heat and dry weather makes them worse. They are mostly seen in dryland fields. I’ve seen a few seriously affected fields lately and I’ve seen them at low numbers in several fields.

We sometimes inadvertently make them worse with other insecticide applications because we kill off some of the beneficial insects that were holding them in check. The insecticides that we use on foliage feeding caterpillars at times make spider mites worse.  We call that flaring them.


Here are some good comments by Dr. Mark Abney, UGA Entomologist. ” The two spotted spider mite is a challenging pest to control. It thrives in hot, dry conditions where it completes development in as little as 7 days at 81ºF. Female mites can lay up to 100 eggs over several weeks, so it is easy to see how infestations can go from light to heavy in a very short period of time.

In the early stages of infestations mites will be found mostly on the undersides of leaves. Their position on the plant and the webbing they create make getting good contact with a miticide difficult. Once infestations progress, mites will be seen on lower and upper portions of the leaves. It is very common to see “hotspots” like the one pictured below in peanut fields when infestations are just getting started. Mites will radiate out from these areas to infest the rest of the field. Populations often get established along field borders and especially borders adjacent to dirt roads or field paths.

Georgia growers are strongly urged to scout fields for spider mites as early detection can improve the odds of effective control. The ovicidal activity of miticides labeled for use in peanut is limited, so more than one application may be needed to clean up infestations. Propargite (e.g. Comite) is currently the only real option for mite control in peanut. I do not recommend the use of a pyrethroid for two spotted spider mite in peanut.”


I took these photos this week in Seminole County.

_DSC7776 _DSC7773

_DSC7751 _DSC7740 _DSC7738 _DSC7737


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