Pest Profile

Stalk Borer
Papaipema nebris
  • Stalk borer
  • Stalk borer moth

Pest Description

Damage occurs in May and June and the growing point may be killed (deadheart). Plants along field margins typically suffer the highest infestation. A prominent transverse purplish band in the region of the true legs can usually be used to identify the larger larval stages of this insect. In early instars, most of the front half of the larva is dark purplish. Most Kansas infestations of note occur in the northeastern part of the state.

Source of information

J.P. Michaud (

Pest photo source

Phil Sloderbeck, KSU Entomology