The European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) is a small butterfly of the Crambidae family. The corn borer larvae cause serious damage to corn plants every year. Once the corn borer larvae have hatched from the egg, they greedily eat their way through the corncobs and plant stems. The corn cobs themselves, as well as the entire corn plant, suffer significant damage as a result. If the corn borer is not controlled, this can lead to an enormous reduction in yield.
The corn borer is the most important pest in corn in our latitudes, especially in southern Germany. The corn borer is causing enormous problems for more and more farmers. It can be controlled with either insecticides or natural enemies. The sowing of genetically manipulated maize, which has a certain resistance to the corn borer, has been prohibited in Germany for several years. Therefore this method is not in question here.
A natural enemy of the corn borer is the ichneumon fly Trichogramma brassicae. Trichogramma brassicae lays its eggs in the corn borer's eggs. The larvae of the ichneumon fly destroy the corn borer's clutch naturally. The corn borer's eggs can no longer produce offspring.
The Trichogramma beneficial insects can be introduced into endangered corn stocks with the aid of capsules, trade name "Trichocap". The capsules can be applied comfortably with a special Trichogramma drone, which drops the capsules at defined distances above the maize field.
Other beneficial insects, such as ladybirds, are not damaged by this method. However, to be effective, the beneficial insects must be released at the beginning of the corn borer's flight and again eight to ten days later.
Trichogramma can be applied very effectively with a drone from the air into the maize field. We use a multicopter for this procedure, which is dropping Trichogramma capsules at defined intervals with pinpoint accuracy using GPS.
Corn borer control with Trichogramma is ecologically sensible and effective.