Date of this Version



© 1980, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


The life history and appearance of common stalk borers is described, along with information on damage they can cause, economic injury levels and ways to control them in corn.

In the past, the common stalk borer, Papaipema nebris, has not been a major pest of corn in Nebraska. Stalk borer damage in corn commonly is confined to occasional plants in the first few rows near field margins, fence rows, grass terraces and waterways. In addition to attacking corn, this insect attacks over one hundred other species of plants, including ornamentals, broadleaf weeds and grasses. It may feed on soybeans as well, but is not an economically important pest of that crop. Understanding the common stalk borer life cycle and behavior is critical to selecting management practices to reduce its damage in corn.