Diagnosis, Assessment and Mapping Critical Diseases and Pests of Field Crops in Northern New York

Worksite Location
Project Dates
Late May through October
Faculty Sponsor
Dr. Gary Bergstrom
Other Campus-Based Mentors/Supervisors
Jaime Cummings, Ken Wise, Steven Smith
Field Mentors/Supervisors
Dr. Kitty O'Neil and Mike Hunter
Stipend Amount
Project Summary and Intended Outcomes

This project is a systematic and geospatial assessment of field crops pests and diseases in NNY, begun in 2013 and funded by the NNY Ag Development Program. NNY Regional CCE staff collaborate with the Bergstrom Plant Pathology Lab on campus to proactively diagnose and assess diseases of corn, soybean and forages together in order to help protect the security and profitability of field crops production in NNY.  Crop pest assessments are conducted with summarized by CCE and NYSIPM staff.  Increased farmer and specialist knowledge of crop pests and pathogens is the main benefit of this project.  

Roles and Responsibilities

Student will be trained to accurately identify and assess severity of several important corn, soybean and forage pests and diseases in NNY so that they may visit fields and farms across the region to monitor crop condition and pest and disease progression.  Student will collect GPS location of all observations so that maps of disease and pest progression may be developed.  Critical observations will be communicated immediately with farms.  Observation data will be shared with NYS IPM programs.  At the end of the growing season, statewide NYS IPM data will be shared with student for mapping of important findings.  Maps will be shared statewide with CCE staff.

Qualifications and Previous Coursework

A basic understanding of corn, soybean and forage plants and management will help, but most important learning will take place in fields, during the season.  Student will participate in weekly Zoom calls to hear of and to share observations with CCE and IPM staff across NYS. 

Benefits and Skills

Student will learn about NYS agriculture, crop management and crop pests through hands-on experience and some formal teaching.  They will have an opportunity at the end of the season to learn GIS mapping software applications to communicate regional and statewide pest and disease findings.