Army Cutworm Publications

Salo, C. 2023. Letter to the Editor: More Reasons to Appreciate the Miller Moth. Colorado Times Recorder, July 19.
Although High Country News declined to publish my letter correcting the misinformation in their miller moth piece, the Colorado Times Recorder (which republished HCN’s piece) did.

Salo, C. 2023. Of Cheatgrass, Cutworms, and Bears. University of Arizona Herbarium, Feb. 9, Tucson, AZ, and Cascabel Community Center, Feb. 19, Cascabel, AZ.
What is cheatgrass and why is it a problem in the West? What do we know about army cutworms and cheatgrass and how well accepted is this knowledge? And what do bears have to do with army cutworms and cheatgrass?

Salo, C. 2021. To predict cheatgrass die-offs we must understand their cause. Sage Science blog, May 19. Two recent federal reports overlook army cutworms as a likely cause of cheatgrass die-offs. The cause suggested by the reports has not been clearly linked to die-offs and is a more complex and less direct explanation for these episodic events.

Salo, C. 2020. Understanding army cutworms can help restore cheatgrass-invaded areas in the U.S. Intermountain West. Natural Areas Association Virtual Conference, Oct. 13-16, Reno, NV.
Contact us to participate in our network of observers monitoring fall moth populations and watching for winter larvae outbreaks and cheatgrass die-offs.

Salo, C. 2019. Can we predict cheatgrass die-offs? Nevada Weed Management Association’s Biennial Conference, October 17–18, Reno, NV.
Predicting die-offs might be easier than predicting reseeding success: look for big late summer rains, lots of miller moths in fall, then dry weather through January.

Salo, C. 2018. Army cutworm outbreak produced cheatgrass “die-offs” and defoliated shrubs in southwest Idaho, 2014. Rangelands 40(4):99-105.
This study predicted an army cutworm outbreak and monitored vegetation damage and subsequent recovery at four sites. These outbreaks seem to occur during extended drought, when late summer rains germinate winter annuals for the larvae to eat, and dry winter weather allows many larvae to survive. I also outline a simple method for identifying die-offs to prioritize them for reseeding with desirable species.

Salo, C. 2017. Army cutworms (Euxoa auxiliaris) consume winter annual plants and shrub foliage. Society for Range Management Annual Meeting, Jan. 29–Feb. 2, 2017, St. George, UT.
Conditions similar to those before the 2003 army cutworm outbreak and cheatgrass die-offs occurred in southwest Idaho in 2014. The large numbers of larvae ate winter annuals and shrub foliage in low, dry areas of the Snake River Plain of Idaho to produce cheatgrass die-offs.

Salo, C. 2011. The cheatgrass that wasn’t there. Land Lines column in Rangelands, June 2011, 33(3):60-62.
Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) failed to appear in large patches across the Intermountain West in 2003. Were army cutworms responsible?

Salo and Zielinkski. 2004. Cheatgrass-dieoffs: of drought, cutworms, and bears? Research poster at Society for Range Management Annual Meeting, Jan. 24–30, Salt Lake City, UT.
Did army cutworms create cheatgrass die-offs in 2003?