xt79w08wbp93 https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt79w08wbp93/data/mets.xml   Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station. 1898 journals kaes_bulletins_074 English Lexington, Ky. : The Station, 1885- Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin n.74. text Bulletin n.74. 1898 2014 true xt79w08wbp93 section xt79w08wbp93 KENTUCKY    
BULLETAN No. 74. A  
A I. ThzChi¤ch-bug. W  
2, Eorthworms CI Source of Gcnpzs in
Poultry. A { »

 . . . * F Q i D4 W
  {J » J: »i *
  ‘ ` l 1 E ` S ` A
      gricu tural xperiment tation. r
i ‘ · A. P. GOODING, Chairman, Mayslick, Ky. i ‘
j ]. B. KENNEDY, Paris, Ky.
1 A   HART BOS\VELL, Lexington, Ky.
V i i ]. K. PATTERSON, President of the College.
M. A. SCOVELL, Director, Secretary.
‘ M. A. SCOVELL, Director.
y ’ A. M. PETER,
ii ` Chemists.
  ‘ _ ill . H. GARMAN, Entoniologist and Botanist.
  C. \V. MATHEWS, Horticulturist. _
_]. N. HARPER, Dairynian. `
_ V. E. MUNCY, \Veather Observer. `
EDWARD RHORER, Secretary to Director. .
  Address of the Station—Ll£XINGTON, KY. `
The Bulletins of the Station will be mailed free to any citizen of ·
Kentucky wl10 sends his name a11d address to the Station for that  `_
' Correspondents will please notify the Director of changes in their '
r post-otlice address, or of any failure to receive the Bulletins. A
i Aumzass : _
` Kiamucav AGRICULTURAL Exmsrumnmr Smriou, A
Laxmorou, Kv. _ `
` 44
‘ .. A  "I I

 I is
2 I .
; .
I Q '
, s »
nv H. GARMAN, 12NToMor.oG1sT AND Boraxxrsr. I .
Kentuckians have not, until within the two years just past, I I i
_ been disposed to admit that the chinch—bug is to be feared as
j an enemy of growing crops in this State. Eight years ago
 _` careful men might have been heard to declare that it never . I
does serious mischief in Kentucky. To many of our farmers
it was, and is yet in some localities, absolutely unknown. But  
the insect has been present in this State, to my personal
knowledge, all the time since 1889. On the Experiment Farm
at Lexington a few individuals can be found at almost any `
time during the summer. Flying individuals are not infre- . .l
quently encountered as one travels along the pikes in blue- _ \ ~
  grass Kentucky. In short all the evidence we have indi- °
_ cates that it is never entirely absent fro1n this region. _  
- \\'hy then should it not be destructive in Kentucky as it , 3
is in Illinois and Iowa? In a general way our farmers are ’]
-, right in the belief that the climate is unfavorable to the .
i chinch-bug. Much of the State has been, and a large‘por- A-
· tion of it is still covered with forest. The retention of
moisture brought about by such natural growths encourages I {
 _ the development of the fungus enemies of the chinch-bug, to l
i which from its habit of gathering together in large numbers -
 _ it is especially subject. Moisture is well known as an enemy I ,
i_ of the insect in States where most of its mischief is done.  
Our own farmers have not been slow to learn the benefncial
i effect in checking injury of a few good showers of rain in
‘ summer. Quite often packages of chinch—bug fungus sent ‘
out from the Station are reported "not used," the reason
given being that opportune rains " scattered " the bugs before
the fungus could be set at work.

 ’° " ` J f I
 . r     46 Bu!/eiz`¢z N0. 74.
    j. ·. 1 It is quite probable, fro1n all we know of the effect of
  _   K moisture on this insect, that its abundance here during 1896
fj Z . ‘ and 1897 was the result of the unimpeded multiplication of
j . i Q the bugs permitted by the exceptionally dry summers of sev-
  · eral years preceding. A couple of wet summers may be
expected to reduce their numbers again. This is what the
_ f history of the insect in other States teaches, for with few
; _ A exceptions in Illinois, Iowa and Kansas notable outbreaks .
_ have followed a succession of dry seasons, or have taken place
i · while drought prevailed. Not only this, but the early writers
° ·— i · on the injuries in the South Atlantic States complain of the `
dry weather prevailing during outbreakss A gentleman
named Sidney \Veller, resident at Brinckleyville, Halifax
- County, North Carolina, wrote i11 1840 after a very severe »
. I drought it
, " Our fears were disappointed and our hopes exceeded as _
j - to this pest, by the hand of an overruling Providence. The
,i season turned off wet and very propitious to crops of all kinds,
  `_ ifi and the ravages of this bug were arrested. Even fields of
  wheat that had been greatly injured, suddenly revived and
produced tolerable crops; and the corn, which last season
. in places here was ruined, escaped nninjured."
X The chinch—bug is a native American insect. Before the —
  settlement of the country by whites, it probably snbsisted on I
' " native grasses, just as it does to so1ne extent now. As an
_ injurious insect it appeared first in wheat fields of the South i »
Atlantic States about 1783, and was called Hessian Hy under
the mistaken impression that it was the same pest that had
_ appeared in wheat fields farther north. At this time it was a °
` " i much 1l1OI“€ serious pest in the Carolinas than it is now, and  ·
* » in some sections, we are told, farmers were compelled to give
1 up growing wheat for several years. Subsequently it appeared
in the upper Mississippi valley, a11d since 1840 has been a  ‘
· constant menace to wheat and corn throughout much of the
_ very best wheat and corn sections of the United States. For
i some unexplained reason it does not do much damage in New
_ *3-\s quoted by Dr. Asa Fitch in his second report on -the noxious
i a insects of New York.
` `I n

 .   K  Z
j E
The Cbivzcb-Img. 47    
York or the New England States. Writiiig in 1885 of an l   ,
instance of its occurring abundantly in New York, Dr. ]. A.   I
Lintner used the following words : _ i
" The insects being submitted to me by Secretary Hari-   i
son, of the State Agricultural Society, they were at once,  
greatly to 1ny surprise, recognized as the notorious chinch- I r ‘
bug of the Southern and \Vestern States. It was the first o i  
I instance of a New York specimen of the species coming under   j
I 1ny observation, nor had I knowledge of its occurrence within i *
Q I the State, beyond the record of Dr. Fitch of his having met .  
‘ with three individuals of it. Dr. Harris had seen one speci-
` men in Massachusetts."
,  . Distribution and Injury in Kentucky.
It appears that the insect is distributed over much of the
Eastern United States, but that its injuries are confined largely  
to those Middle States in which most of our wheat and corn is
grown. Illinois, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri embrace within
their limits much of the territory in which the chinch—bug is at  
present seriously destructive. Kentucky is at the border of i A-,
this region, and, generally, complaints of damage come from , `
I counties along the Ohio river. So far as we have information l
on the subject, outbreaks in Kentucky occur about the same ,  
° time as those in the upper part of the valley, but are less marked I j
V even in the upper counties, and sometimes do not attract gen-  
i, eral attention. In 1887 when, according to ]. R. Dodge, - j
Statistician of the Department of Agriculture,’i‘ the states -
Kentucky; Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, \Visconsin, Minnesota
· and Kansas, together lost $6o,ooo,ooo from chinch-bug injury ; ` {
. this State as l1er share lost on her corn and wheat crop, l
$569,813,. Yet the injury was restricted to the counties A
Bracken, Pendleton, Carroll, Estill, Mercer, Union, Marshall I ,
· and Ballard. The insect, as already stated, did not again if
` attract attention in the State until ISQO, when it became
locally troublesome, showing a disposition to occupy the
interior counties and did mischief at isolated places even in
*See Bulletin 17, Division of Entomology, L`. S. Department Agricul-
ture, by L. O. Howard.
H"`l n .

 *1 Zi 1 ET .
  ` fi   48 BZ/Zlfflill [V0. 7.;.
    , ii ._ Tennessee. The complai11t of severe injury in,Kentucky
  i ;·i —, came fro111 two widely separate localities. Kenton County,
  ' n _ immediately opposite Cincinnati, seemed to be the center of
All Z; . greatest abundance in Eastern Kentucky. Another isolated
    if center occurred in the western part of tl1e State, near the
  mouth of tl1e Tennessee River, the injury being greatest i11
. Marshall County. From 1nost of the counties between these
: two widely separated centers few complaints of i11jury were
l ` l ‘ received. The only intermediate counties from which COll1·
1 V plaints came were Shelby, Mercer Zllld Marion, all three away
. ·V ; _ fro111 tl1e Ohio River, Hlld constituting a third center, though
not far removed fron1 tl1e group of counties opposite Cincinnati.
I11 this last region but little injury was (lOllC, only hve com- ·
_ · plaints being received from tl1e three counties. In 1897 tl1e
—` centers of injury were shifted to some extent. The Kenton
K County center appeared to have zuoved eastward along tl1e
‘ W Ohio River, tl1e largest number of complaints being from
I i Lewis County, 1lOt far from tl1e eastern limit of the State.
·— *ij   The sa111e eastward shifting appears to have taken place in
' `g V western Kentucky, no complaint at all coming fro1n Marsliall
h County, while from McLea11 County more were received than
from any other i11 this part of Kentucky, ftll(l injury was
observed i11 all the neighboring counties along the Ohio River,
.2.; except Hancock, from Livingston to Meade, inclusive. The ·
  ._ insects became especially abundant a11d troublesome in Marion,
\\Y£lSlll1lgtOl1 and Nelson counties, more complaints being ·
‘ receivedgfrom this region than have been received before from
any part of the State. This is very 11ear tl1e center of Ke11—
tucky, a11d tl1e prevalence of tl1e insect here a11d its presence
. , · in small numbers i11 Clark, Russell, \Varren, Simpson, Graves _
, and other isolated counties, shows that it is capable of doing I
· _ mischief i11 any part of tl1e State where wheat and corn are
grown. Ill truth the chinch—bug was i11 1897 distributed V.
A ` throughout crop—growing Kentucky.
An interesting feature of its injuries i11 1897, as compared
j with those in 1896, is tl1e fact that in 1897 no i11jury of COllS€~
. quence was suffered in the counties i11 wl1icl1 tl1e greatest
I . destructio11 was wrought in 1896. In tl1e latter year 111ore
l — _ I V"} I

 I l 
p l
The Chz`2zrh—{12qg·, 49     i
complaints came from Kenton than from any other county, i   ,
while in 1897 only one complaint came from this county.    
Marshall County in 1896 was, next to Kenton County, the l “
seat of greatest injury, but in 1897 not a single complaint i  
came from Marshall County. To what extent the distribu- l E
tion of the chinch-bug fungus in these counties contributed to j , 1
this result it is impossible to say, yet that it did contribute in · °  
some measure is altogether probable, and with this feature of    
the subject in view it will be interesting to note in 1898 the ’ l
i condition of the chinch-bug injury in the counties that re- 4  
. ceived most of the fungus in 1897. The study of the chinch-
bug in tl1e State indicates that it is spreading from tl1e west
towards the east and south, and unless the weather of 1898
continues damp, we are likely to witness its injuries more
widespread than they have yet been. The promise at present
is for a wet season, yet it is not well to depend on anything so  
uncertain as the weather, and itpis with this thought in mind
that the present account of the chinch-bug has been drawn up.
V . 4 i I I 1*
/' ll ` l ‘
E   ° il l
- ®
_ n
c \ ‘
A \ ,
FIG. 1.-—A side view of head and part of thorax of chinch-bug, as seen
through the microscope. A, jointed beak; B, the slender ll10lltl1. `
parts used in puncturing plants, partly witlnlrawn from groove on
dorsal side of jointed beak ; C, the slender upper lip, or labrinn ; D,
the eye; E, base of antenna.
U"} n .

 .  ‘ ‘’    if   T  
‘ 1 4 5 T
  i   ij · » 50 B2:/[cfm N0. 74.
A r
    .   . What It Is Like.
  I   i The adult bug is about 3-16 inch long and 1-16 inch wide;
  ; . ` black in general, with white wings lying flat on the back, each
  , A . with a black dot at the middle of the outer margin. The legs
  ‘ and bases of the feelers are red. The young without wings ‘
4 are more or less red in color. Very young have a cross-band of
f pale yellow. Older examples with rudiments of wings are
1 W i V largely black in front, approaching in this respect the adult
_ insect.
' 1 The chinch-bug feeds at all times after it leaves the egg.
’   i i" It is provided with a beak and takes only the sap of plants
for food.
i V The winter is spent as an adult under boards, logs, leaves
` and the like at the edges of cultivated helds. The bugs do
, ‘ not remain in the Fields as a rule at this season. As long as
il i cold weather continues the hibernating individuals lie torpid,
  di _ but with the Hrst warm spring days they begin to stir, Z1l1(l
’ `; may then be found close under boards and stones, where the
I warmth of the sun reaches them. `\Vhen wheat begins to
grow they leave their retreats and make their way into the
` lields, placing their eggs in May and june i11 the earth about
  the young plants. These winged adults that have wintered i
  ._. over do no special harm, being chiefly concerned with placing
their eggs where the young will hud suitable food. Each i
female lays about 5oo   and then dies.
The young which hatch from their eggs often do a great
deal of mischief to small grain, and become nearly or quite
, _ ~ grown about the time such grains are harvested. They then ’
_ leave the ripened wheat and oats for corn, traveling along the
i· I ground, and it is at such times that they are often seen at
the edges of corn fields gathered so thickly on the stalks '
T i that these are blackened by them. \Vhen very abundant
i these traveling bugs sometimes accumulate in heaps several
  inches deep on the ground. The brood matures on corn,
- when not already matured, and places tl1e   fora second
‘ . brood under the enfolding parts (boots) of the lower blades,
. I"] I

 1 .,
· 1
l 1
1 Y
The Cbiyzcb-Img. 51    
as well as in the ground. The second brood may either 3 ,
remain upon corn, or when very abundant, sometimes leaves  
cornfields for fall wheat. There is evidence of the develop-
ment of a third brood at this latitude, but the injury is done 1 i
by the two broods above mentioned. i
The chinch-bug may be recognized by the peculiar pun- 1 1
gent buggy odor given off when it is handled, or when sud- [  
denly exposed in its retreats between the husks of corn ears.    
\Vhen thus uncovered, it quickly conceals itself again, often Z ‘
dropping to the ground and hurriedly getting out of sight .  
1 under clods. Its expertness in making its way through
crevices and small openings is truly remarkable, and enables
it not only to avoid its enemies, but to reach the inner tender
parts of the plants upon which it feeds.
Its Enemies.  
Probably no American insect has fewer natural enemies.
Very few birds prey upon it because of its repulsive smell __
and taste. It is questionable if any of them are fond of it, T
and it is certain that none feed upon it to such an extent that 1 *4
i they are worth considering as checks upon its increase. Sev- 1 `,
eral lady beetles have been observed to prey upon it, yet seem ,
. never to have an appreciable effect in reducing its numbers 1 ·
i during an outbreak. From its disposition to devour foul- __ i
° smelling bugs, the common toad is calculated to be very useful '
during chinch-bug outbreaks, and its presence about grain V .
tields should always be encouraged. A good word must also °
be said for the quail, which is known to eat chinch-bugs, ocea-
sionally at least, and for the meadow lark.   l
Chiuch-bug Fungi. ·
i i Yet there is no American insect that is subject to greater ix
fluctuations in numbers than this one. For a series of years s
, it may 11ot attract attention at all, even where it is best known
 _ and most destructive. Then an outbreak comes that means V
almost total ruin to the wheat and oats of some sections, and
serious reduction of yield throughout the greater part of our
wheat—growing area. If the chinch-bug were attacked by
H"} • .

   i " L   I 52 Bzz!/w‘1'1z A70. 77l.
.=· , ~ ‘. i ,
  I :-· __ i small ichneumon flies, as is the grain louse, we might suppose
  'V   ly _' it was the work of such parasites; but the chinch—bug has no
  Z _ enemies of this kind, as far as known; and as stated, is not
il Y; , much hampered by insect enemies of other kinds.
g `· 1 The periods of exceptional abundance come almost inva-
Q n riably during dry seasons. But why should this be? Is I
I _ moisture directly hurtful to the bugs, and do they simply
i multiply without check when drought and sunshine prevail?
E · i · The quickness with which they disappear after a couple of
l heavy showers in midsummer, gives some ground for the
_ . , _ belief that a dreuching rain actually kills them. But after
V i i i witnessing the manner in which they endure drenching and
even immersion in water when kept in confinement, one is
n compelled to abandon this belief. Furthermore, there is evi-
i _ dence gathered from field observations showing that the
‘ I chincl1—bug will endure as much soaking with water as most
other insects. In the account by Dr. Lintner, referred to
  ` above, of its depredations in New York, it is stated that it
._   ` multiplied in spite of persistent rainy weather. He says:
·   "'I`he past year and the present have both been years of
' excessive rainfall in St. Lawrence county; spring, summer
and autumn have been exceptionally wet. In the spring
‘ heavy a11d continued rains flooded meadows now showing the
gf, chinch—bug attack. At haying time, when the bugs were
if I _ young, a11d according to all statements hitherto made, readily I
killed by wet, the rains were so frequent and severe that the
grass cut could only be secured with difficulty. Upon Mr.
King’s farm much of it was drawn in, upon favorable days,
by improving the opportunity of extending the labor into
_ _ . · nightfall. At tl1e present time grass is lying in Helds in .
_ stacks, which could not be gathered, owing to continued rain,
i and fields of oats are still unharvested." `
i Dr. Lintner suggests in explanation of this immunity · ·
that it wasa recent introduction into the State, and that it
' followed the rule with such recent importations in becoming
, more destructive in its newly invaded territory than it was in
, regions where it had been long established. It is a fact that
l _ insects not especially injurious in their original home often
i -"I • -

 I V.
The Chzbzch-bz¢,g·. 53.    
become exceedingly destructive and difficult to deal with when E  
by some chance they reach a foreign country. The notorious    
San ]ose scale is an example. The cottony cushion scale of   i
citrus fruits is still another. The reason why they are more i 1
destructive when transplanted is not far to seek. I11 the case °  
of the cottony cushion scale, it appears that it was brought to Q I
our western orchards without its natural checks, and when ‘  
they were sought out and imported also this insect was no , 1
longer to be greatly feared. Unfortunately, we do not yet   I
know positively the native land of the San ]ose scale, but it is i V
very probable that we shall yet find its natural check when we ' i
have learned more of it in foreign countries.
Now, in the Middle States, the chinch-bug is attacked by
several parasitic fungi, which appear to be very generally
scattered ready to destroy the bug when the weather condi-
tions are proper for their growth. They are here in Kentucky,  
in Illinois, in Kansas, and other States of the Ohio and Mis-
sissippi valleys. They are dependent on moisture, and when
rains come they get their opportunity. But in New York, ~
where the chinch—bug is commonly very rare, these parasites, ,
we lllily suppose, were not common in cultivated fields, and i'
hence, the bugs, once started, had, for a time, everything their i ` 4
own way. ·
Two of these plant parasites are known to be particularly `  
" effective in destroying chinch-bugs. They are fungi, some-   f
what more highly organized than the microbes so often
mentioned as causing epidemic diseases, but seem to act in ‘_
much the same way, getting into the bodies of insects through
the breathing pores, and by their growth in the interior, X
_ destroying the life of the attacked bugs, and then pushing  
through to the outside, where the fruit or spores are devel- A
‘ oped. The small growing threads are too small to be dis- . »
. cerned with the unaided eye, and hence, the only way to get a ,\
knowledge of the structure and 1llZll1l1€I‘ of fruiting is by the *
use of the compound microscope. The presence of these fungi
is to be known by the white or gray powdery coats formed on -
the backs, and often completely covering the dead bugs. The
most common and active species has received the name
-"I • .

  Y? if    
i f ,»   ii i I
@  , 1 Ei .
 . J _ i;   U 54 Bu//ez‘z'1z JVO. 74.
  if f . Z "Chinch-bug Fungus."’*‘ It is pure white as com1nonly seen ·
    Y 011 the bodies of insects, but, -when old, becomes. of a light
  L_ · cream-yellow color. \Vhen it is grown i11 large masses, this
    l , change is especially marked. n
i_ V The second fungusf is 110t so common as the other, and
` has not, as far as I know, been grown artificially for distribu-
T tion. It appears on bugs in the field at times, and the Sjmro-
, _ lr1'ch2¢12z, 111€11tlOIl€d above, has sometimes received credit for ,
i l good work do11e by this species. It produces a gray coat 011
‘ . the bodies of dead bugs.
¤ l Y But chinch-bugs sometimes die in large numbers, and pre-
se11t11one of the symptoms of attack by either of the above .
i . fungi. The fiuids of these bugs examined under the micro-
scope are often S\\'2`LI‘1]ll11g witl1 a micro-organism, which
, ` received, many years ago, the 11an1e "/Jan//us z'¢zserz‘0r2mz."
It is one of the microbes such as we find associated with cer-
, . tain infectious human diseases, and although it is easily
  . grown artificially in beef broth 211lCl in nutrient gelatine, it has
  _   not, thus far, in experiment, proved of value i11 destroying
i the chinch-bug in the field.
These are the enemies most useful to us, it is thought,
_ from their destruction of chinch—bugs. The chinch-bug
` fungus (Sporotrichum) has been quite extensively grown
jg;} artificially in several of the Middle States, and thousands of 4
*1 farmers have used it i11 their fields. In Kansas it has been
more extensively used than elsewhere, and the testimony of
farmers there has been at times strongly in favor of its
effectiveness as a remedy for chinch—bug injury. The testi-
mony of those who have been chiefly concerned in its culture
`   ` and distribution is, however, somewhat less positive, owing. »
i ‘**’l`he botanical name is Sj>u1·0/rio/zzmz _,Q`/0/ill/[/TV']!/Il. It attacks ‘
many insects of several different orders; in fact, will probably attack,
. spontaneously, most of those that live in such a way as to give it an l
, opportunity. It is especially destructive in Kentucky to the false chinch-
bug f.\;l’SI-IIS r111_g·1r.v/tz/xxx). The harlequin cabbage bug, tl1e tobacco
{ worms, the cabbage Plusia, and the bird grasshopper (,S`rbz`x/m‘w·m (I/}lz`/’~
, immzl have proved especially liable to its attacks when confined in the
_ Vivarium of lily Division.
' _ TE}//0}}IO/7/Q//IU/'hfzz’i.v.

I* {
The Chizzch-bug. 55 I {
partly, to unquestionable failure of the fungus to catch under I
some circumstances, and partly to the fact that the fungus   I
appears spontaneously in fields, making it impossible to say,   I
' under any ordinary field test, that it was actually introduced » 1
artificially. In Kentucky the fungus has been cultivated and ° :
distributed now for two summers to all farmers who applied
for it. Not all who received packages have reported to me, I   i
but the majority of those reporting to date, who actually used , ;
i the fungus, assert that it cleared their fields of the bugs. 2  
Some were in doubt, not being sure but that the disappearance . i _
of the bugs was caused directly by rainy weather. But in ‘ j
V view of all chances of error, the outlook in the direction of
destroying this and other pests with artificially grown para-
sites does not _seem to me discouraging. I know from my
own experience that an enclosed area of goo square feet can
be so thoroughly infected with the chinch—bug fungus, that  
11ot only the chinch-bug, but the harlequin cabbage bug and
the bird grasshopper are not safe from it. This area is under
glass, it is true, and the moisture and warmth no doubt ~
furnish conditions calculated to preserve the fungus and _ i
encourage its activity. But I can see no practical difficulty 1*
in cultivating the fungus on so large a scale that a whole I I
county, or even a State, could be thoroughly sown with the ·
spores so that the bugs would be in constant danger from i  
I them. It is largely a question of money. Illinois is esti-   f
mated to have lost in a single year 3$73,ooo_ooo from chinch-
bug injury, a sum which could be made to establish and  
maintain laboratories that would furnish quantities of the
fungus at any time to all who applied. But, it will be urged, {
, you cannot control weather conditions, and what is the use j
of sending out parasitic fungi when the drought is such that _
` they will not attack the insects? In reply it may be said that  
. the spores of the fungus retain their vitality in soil for a con-  
siderable period, and one of the purposes of such laboratories
should be to keep the parasite alive in chinch—bug infested
regions in such quantities that it would quickly do its work
as soon as the weather admitted. The experience with the
insect in New York during rainy weather illustrates the
importance of having the fungus at hand at all times.
-"\ • .

 s »~   ` {  
. ·1~ _ l2 , ·
  I     if
i· ' ·<   . ;
  if , ·;V   J 56 BI!//£’fI·}l ./V0. 7,1.
1 n
  · __; j l‘ Can fields be kept stocked with the fungus? I believe
  Q.   they can. It is well known that certain, bacteria become
  2- 4 i established in rooms so that it is extremely difficult t0 keep · I
j QA if them out of any fluid or nutritious matter suitable for their
  ` growth. Certain yeasts’i‘ causing so-called "diseases" in alco—
X holic beverages, are sometimes in similar manner established
J l in distilleries where they become exceedingly troublesome;
; . , _ and one of the reforms introduced by recent scientific method ‘
. ‘ is the suppression of the disease—producing yeasts, and the
i ‘ isolation in pure cultures, the cultivation and introduction
° I I ` into such beverages of the ll1lCl'O-OI‘g'{`L1]l5lll known to produce
the aroma desired. If injurious micro—organisn1s may become
established and prevalent because of simple neglect, in the
i nature of the case it should be practicable to establish useful
. { ones by design. It is true tl1e difficulties become greater
when one leaves the laboratory, the dairy, and distillery for
y · the grain field, where conditions cannot be controlled. But
_ yi ‘ where so much is at stake, difficulties should 1lOt stand in the
.` ., T t way of a thorough test of a remedy in any degree promising.
The Method of Using the Fungus.
A In Kentucky we have thus far adopted the practice orig-
  inally recommended by Prof. Snow, and detailed in a circular
  , which we send out with each package of the fungus. The 4
central idea of this method is to infect the bugs by confining
them for a time in a box with some of the fungus, and then
set them free to carry the contagion to their comrades out of
doors'. The box can be made of any lumber, but must be so
t _ — constructed that the bugs cannot escape. It is not so easy to .
_ make such a box as might be supposed, because the bugs get
i _ through very small crevices and persist in getting away, no `
matter how inviting the box is made. A layer of damp earth I
` is spread over the bottom of the box, and fresh food in the
W shape of young. oats or corn is kept constantly in the box.
i VVhen the bugs begin to die, a part of them are take11 to the
. field where bugs are abundant, and set free, and other
‘   *S¢m‘h¢zr0myz`es pezs/arfauus, for example.
* "'I • -

E 5
. Thu Chizzch-bug. Sy     ‘
5 `
A healthy bugs are substituted for them in the box. By repeat-   l
, ing this from time t0 time, the box is made a source from   ,
  which a steady supply of diseased bugs can be obtained. T A
I The method has defects that stand in the way of its suc-    
cess. The quantity of the fungus sent out is small in the first l
place, co1mno11ly not exceeding half a11 ounce, and the con- _ , I
fined chinch-bugs may not contract the disease in less than i §
_ five days or a week, during which time the mischief is going ·    
on out doors, or else the bugs become scattered to carry on I ¢
their work in the neighborhood the following season. Then _ ,  
again, it is often not possible in Kentucky to collect the bugs l
in sufhcient quantities to carry out the directions given in the
circular, yet, at the same time, they are abundant enough to
do a great deal of harm, and in any case are a threat for the
future. Some method must be developed, if possible, that
will enable the farmers to set the fungus at work as soon as  
the bugs appear, and before they become abundant.
It is 1ny personal opinion, though, that the sending out of
small packages of the fungus is to be commended, even though i"
the benefit is not at once apparent, and reports received are in · .,
the main unfavorable. These small packages contai11 1nil— , ~
lions of spores, and the chances are very good indeed that Q
some one of these would destroy a bug or two, and thus ,  
A introduce the parasite where it was not before present. If the . 5
p one receiving the package did no more than empty the small Yi
box in his infested field, there would still be a chance that the l . _
fungus would obtain a foothold and do future effective work. ·
lf this is haphazard practice, so, it lllély be replied, is t11e
sowing of bluegrass, crimson clover, and even wheat during a I {
. dry fall. The seeds of these crops fail to catch u11der much 1 i
the S€llll€ conditions that prevent the catcl1ing of the chinch- ·
` bug fungus. »
V A Suggestion as to Practice. l
`\Vhen the spores of the chinch—bug fungus have been as
systematically sown in our fields for a series of years as are V
the seeds of clover or wheat and the result carefully observed
and recorded we shall be in a position to say whether or not
 *1 » . Nv  _ t X

g  `Z. . lf   i  
if .1 S i; I
  , e_ ji .
      ' 58 B2¢Z!e!z`1z N0. 74.
    . I the treatment is a success. And I wish here to offer a sug-
  ii _! j gestion as to practice which I hope to employ myself when
  * _ opportunity comes. Briefly told, it is this : Moisten seed
ij Yi , wheat and dust it thoroughly with the fungus before sowing.
i `Q i The hot water treatment for smut in wheat seems destined
] to be very generally adopted by growers of the crop. It is a 4
, . very simple matter to suspend wheat in a barrel of water
heated to 131-1320 F. for nfteen minutes, and when it is , _
i ’ I spread out to dry it will take but a few minutes more to dust
1 i it with the fungus, just as it is dusted with lime after it has
_ ·   _ been soaked in bluestone. The fungus can easily be grown
V by the quart, with a little outlay of money, and I should
judge that this quantity would be sufficient to charge all the
seed wheat commonly planted by one farmer.
· How to Grow the Fungus.
{ , The methods of growing the fungus have no practical
  interest for the farmer, since he cannot be expected soon to
‘·   grow it for his own use, no matter how effective it may prove
I `Q to be ; but as explaining the nature of the fungus some obser-
vations on methods of handling it may be worth giving. My
_ own practice is based upon methods in use everywhere in
bacteriological laboratories. The fungus is obtained from an
  insect that is covered with the white growth by the use of a .
  ~. platinum needle (a piece of wire two inches long) in the end
of a glass rod and