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Crop Profiles

Crop Profile for Corn (Field) in Vermont

Prepared: February, 1999

General Production Information

  • Vermont ranks twentieth in the nation for field corn production, and contributes less than 1% of the total.
  • In 1997, 95000 acres of field corn were grown in Vermont; 88000 acres were harvested for silage while the remaining 7000 acres were produced as High Moisture Ear Corn.
  • The total crop cash value was $46,728,000 while production cost for the year was $3,602,830.

 

Production Regions:

  • NW � St. Albans � ( Franklin, Chittenden and Lamoille Counties )

  • NE � St. Johnsbury � ( Orleans, Essex, and Caledonia Counties )

  • Central � Barre � ( Washington and Orange Counties )

  • SE � Brattleboro � ( Windham and Bennington Counties )

  • SW � Rutland � ( Rutland, Addison and Windsor Counties )

 


Cultural Practices

Four soil types exist: I Spodosols the most dominant accounts for approximately 80% of the Vermont soils and are found in the central portion of the state from north to south. II Inceptisols are found on the eastern and western state borders and from north to south. III Alfisols are found in the Champlain Valley along the lake. IV Entisols make are dominant in Franklin County, the states northwest corner. Soil preparation includes limited no-tillage culture, much limited-tillage culture and some traditional moldboard tillage culture in spring and in fall especially on heavy soils in Addison County. Soils are often limed to above pH 6.0, although some soils in the southwest have more neutral pH.

Planting time varies greatly within the state relative to soil drainage, topography and spring weather. Planting usually begins in mid May in mildest areas and ends in mid June. Growing degree days range from 1400 to 2400 and hybrids with days to relative maturity from 70 to 120 are usually chosen. Seeding rates in high moisture ear corn are often near 30,000 plants per acre with expected harvest populations of 26,000 to 28,000 plants per acre and in silage corn near 32,000 to 34,000 plants per acre with expected harvest populations near 30,000 plants per acre. Nutrient management is often but not extensively aided by soil tests. Nitrogen fertilization is predominantly sod crops and manure with urea or ammonium nitrate as starter and side-dressing. Limited interplanting of white clover during continuous corn years is utilized. Presidedress nitrate tests are commonly utilized. Potash is usually high on Vermont soils from high manure applications but low potash soils are granularly amended either at planting or side-dressed, and granular phosphorous is usually banded with full recommended application at planting each season. Corn is often continually grown on bottom land, but rotations with alfalfa, grass, and grass-legume mixtures are common and requisite on less fertile soils with two to three years in corn and three to five years in sod crops. Soybeans are also being introduced in rotation with corn on a few farms. A few farms are also using small grains and small grain/legume mixes in corn rotations.

Weed control is almost exclusively accomplished with herbicide applications although some farms, especially certified organic producers, use cultivation along with a few white clover interplanting strategies. Triazine application preplant and preemergence are the most common control methods, although pre and postemergence applications of a variety of herbicides is not uncommon and a mixture of atrazine with other herbicides is often favored. Triazine resistant biotypes of common lambsquarters, smooth pigweed, common ragweed, and common groundsel have created a need for other methods of control. Minimal late season applications are used for control of weeds which are an impediment to harvest.

The most important insect pests of field corn in Vermont are the European corn borer, the western and northern corn rootworm, and cutworm. Other insect pests include armyworm, seed corn maggot, wireworm, hopvine borer, thrips and potato stem borer. European corn borer control is most often accomplished with traditional tillage or taking corn as chopped silage. Chemical treatments are usually not economical as control methods. Northern and western corn rootworms are most often controlled with rotation, early planting, and planting varieties with good standability. Chemical treatments during adult stages is recommended when more than 55 adults per 55 plants are present if the field will be in corn again. Cutworm control is accomplished with late planting, good weed control and avoidance of low wet areas. Treatment is recommended if more than 5% of plants have been cut. Seed treatment with insecticide for seed corn maggot is almost universal. Armyworm is an occasional problem in weedy fields and chemical treatment is rarely economical. Wireworm is controllable only with discing of affected crops and chemical treatment of soil followed by replanting. Hopvine borer and potato stem borer are localized in infestation and are controlled with proper weed control.

Harvest of silage corn begins in late August and continues through October, although the majority of silage corn is harvested in September. Concerns about moldy silage have caused farmers to become more conscientious about harvest prior to killing frost. High moisture ear corn is usually harvested between September and October but it is not unusual to see harvests into December on frozen ground. Silage corn is usually stored in bunker silos, upright silos, or bags. Fermentation additives are not uncommon, including acids, bacterial inoculant, and enzymes. High moisture ear corn is usually stored in oxygen limiting upright silos.

Insect Pests

INSECT V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
E.C.B.

Yearly

Broken leaf midribs. Sawdust like frass in the tassel. Tunnels in both stalks and ears. Holes in leafs.

Overwinters as an adult larva in field debris and ears stored in cribs. Moths lay flay white eggs on the underside of leaves in straight rows of 5 to 50. Eggs hatch several days later. Two generations may occur in June-July and/or August-September.

Generation 1:
June-July
Generation 2:
Aug-Sept

 

 

INSECT V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Corn Rootworm
(Northern & Western)

Corn plant roots will be dead and broken, goose necking may occur. Adult beetles will attack the plant tassels.

Eggs overwinter in field soil from late summer and hatch the following spring. Larva feed on the roots of corn plants exclusively. Larva are small, white, and elongate with a brown head and well developed mandible. Larva pupate in the soil. Adult beetles are a quarter of an inch long. NCRWs are tan to pale green while WCRWs are yellow with a black strip at wing cover sides. Beetles survive until the first hard frost.

Larva:
Mid May-Mid June
Adults:
Mid July-Mid Sept.

 

 

INSECT V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Armyworm

Ragged holes chewed in from leaf margins and pellet like frass in the leaf wholes and on the ground.

Larva will be found in leaf wholes and at the soils surface. Especially in no tillage corn with heavy weeds or fields from grains or grasses.

May

Cutworm

Missing, cut or wilted plants.

Adult moths lay eggs in weeds, to which they are attracted. More than one generation per year may occur. Larva are smooth, dull colored caterpillars 1-2 inches long when full grown and curl tightly when handled. They feed at night and hide in the soil during the day.

May

 

 

INSECT V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
SeedCorn Maggot

Germinating seeds are killed or injured.

Adults are medium sized flies which remain through the growing season. Eggs are laid in moist soil cracks near seedlings or decaying matter as a food source. After hatching the maggot larva move through the soil.

Mid April - Early June

Wireworm/ Click Beetles

Larva feed on germinating seeds and/or the base of young plants.

Larva are long, smooth, hard-bodied and yellow to red brown. Typically a problem when corn follows sods.

Mid May - Mid June

 

 

INSECT Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
E.C.B.

CURRENTLY NOT CONTROLED BY PESTICIDES IN VERMONT

Corn Rootworm
(Northern & Western):
Larval

Lorsban

Chloropyrifos

15

Granular

Band or Furrow

8 ozs/1000 linear'

Dyfonate*

Fonofos*

15

Granular

Band

8 ozs/1000 linear'

Counter*

Tebufos*

4.63

Granular

Band or Furrow

8 ozs/1000 linear'

Force*

Tefluthrin*

1.5

Granular

Band or Furrow

8 ozs/1000 linear'

 

 

INSECT Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Armyworm

Sevin

Carbaryl

80

Soluble

Foliar

1.25-2.5 lbs/A

Lorsban

Chloropyrifos

44.9

Emulsifiable

Foliar

1-2 pts/A

Asana*

Esfenvalerate

8.4

E Conc.

Foliar

5.8-9.6 fl ozs/A

Pounce*

permethrin

38.4

E Conc.

Foliar

4 - 8 oz/A

Ambush*

permethrin

25

Wetable

Foliar

6.4 - 12.8 oz/A

Cutworm

Sevin

Carbaryl

80

Soluble

Foliar

2.5 lb/A

Lorsban

Chloropyrifos

4

Emulsion

Foliar

2-3 pt/A

Asana*

Esfenvalerate

0.66

E Conc.

Foliar

5.8-9.6 fl oz/A

Pounce*

permethrin

38.4

E Conc.

Foliar

4 - 8 oz/A

Ambush*

permethrin

25

Wetable

Foliar

6.4 - 12.8 oz/A

 

 

INSECT Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
SeedCornMaggot

Agrox 2-Way

Captan +

37

Dust

Planter Box

2 oz/bu

Diazinon

25

BlueRibbon PII

Captan +

36

Dust

Planter Box

2 oz/bu

Diazinon

25

AgroxDL-Plus*

Captan +

14

Dust

Planter Box

1.8 oz/bu

Diazinon +

15

Lindane*

25

GerminatePlus*

Captan +

14

Dust

Planter Box

2 oz/bu

Diazinon +

15

Lindane*

25

Wireworm /
Click Beetles

Dyfonate*

Fonofos*

47.3

Emulsifion

Band

4 qt/A

15

Granula

Broadcast

40 lb/A

Counter*

Terbufos*

4.63

Granula

Furrow

8-16 ozs/1000 linear'

 

 

INSECT Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
E.C.B.

None Used

Clean Plowing

Resistant Hybrids

Rootworm
(Northern & Western)

None Required

Crop Rotation

None

Armyworm

None

Crop Rotation. Eliminate field debris.

None

Cutworm

None

Avoid Late Planning. Avoid Weed Infestations. Tillage.

None

Maggot

None

Avoid Heavy Manure Spreading

None

Wireworm/
Click Beetle

None

None

None

 

Diseases


DISEASE V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Stalk and Ear Rots:
fusarium

10-20% as a group

Whitish-pink/salmon discoloration of pith, stalk breakage and pre-mature ripening.
Similar to giberella.

Under warm wet conditions Fungi develop on crop residue in or on soil surfaces, then enter directly or at wound sites.
May also be seedborn.

Apparent soon after pollination.

gibberella

10-20% as a group

Leaves wilt dull gray. Lower internodes soften and turn brown colors. Pith shreds and turns pink to reddish.

Under warm wet conditions Perithecia-mature windborn ascospores penetrate tissues.

Symptoms appear between silking and pollination. Conidia-fungus overseasons in maize debris and rarely as seed.

 

 

DISEASE V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
diplodia

10-20% as a group

Plants die suddenly and injury resembles frost damage with gray color. White Fungal growth may be present on the surfaces. Pith discolors deep red and disintegrates leaving only intact vascular bundles. Lower internodes turn maroonish and spongy.

Under warm moist conditions, spores overseason, mycelium in seed are extruded and carried by wind, rain and probably insect. Infection occurs through crown, mesocotyl, roots and sometimes at crown ear nodes. Seedborn inoculum causes seedling blight. This pathogen grows only in the stalk.

Signs show several weeks after silking.

 

 

DISEASE V of Occurance % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Smuts:

Ear Smut

0-10% (usually<2%)

Initially, galls are covered with a glistening greeneish-white to silver-white tissue. Gall interiors darken and turn to masses of powdery dark olive-brown to black spores, unless the galls appear on the leaves. Mature galls may reach 15cm in diameter, while leaf galls will remain less than 1.2cm. Leaf galls will not rupture as will the others.

Dry conditions and temperatures 26 to 34 degrees C. Chlamydospores overwinter and germinate to produce sporidia carried by air currents or splashed by water to young tissues. Binucleate mycelium penetrate the host through stamata, wounds or cell walls causing host cells to proliferate.

Damage begins at ear and tassel formation.

 

 

DISEASE V of Occurance % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Rust

< 1 %

Pustules (sori) may appear on all above ground parts with highest concentrations on the leaves. They are round or elliptical and golden to cinnimon. Found scattered over both leaf surfaces; pustules color will darken with maturity.

High relative humidity and temperatures of 16-23 degrees C. Spores are windblown into temperate zones from nearby tropical and subtropical areas.

July - September

 

 

DISEASE V of Occurance % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Fungal Diseases:

Eyespot

< 1 %

Lesions develop on green tissue in patchy zones. Initially lesions are water soaked, and later develop centers of light colors or are translucent, surrounded by dark brown rings which are framed by a yellow halo.

Cool humid conditions. Fungus overwinters in maize debris. Conidia germinate on then infect seedlings after transport by weather. The fungus may also be seedborn.

July - September

 

 

DISEASE V of Occurance % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Anthracnose

< 1 %

Leaf blade lesions are semitransparent. Oval spots may enlarge to 15mm and become tan at the center with borders yellow to red in color having a brown hue. Throughout the season symptoms progress up the plant. Coalescing lesions may blight the entire leaf.

Extended periods of clouds and high temperatures. Overwinters as spores and mucelium on seeds, or as saprophyte on maize crop residue in the fields. The fungus is spread by weather and infection occurs through leaf epidermis and stomata. Seedborn innoculum may cause blight on seedlings.

July - September

 

 

DISEASE Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Stalk and Ear Rots:

NO PESTICIDE TREATMENTS ARE CURRENTLY USED AGAINST FOLLOWING DISEASE IN VERMONT

Fusarium

Gibberella

Diplodia

 

 

DISEASE Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Smuts:

Ear Smut

NO PESTICIDE TREATMENTS ARE CURRENTLY USED AGAINST SMUT DISEASE IN VERMONT

 

 

DISEASE Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Rusts:

NO PESTICIDE TREATMENTS ARE CURRENTLY USED AGAINST SMUT DISEASE IN VERMONT

 

 

DISEASE Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Fungal Diseases:

Eyespot

NO PESTICIDE TREATMENTS ARE CURRENTLY USED AGAINST SMUT DISEASE IN VERMONT

 

 

DISEASE Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Stalk and Ear Rots:

fusarium

None

Lower plant populations. Balanced soil fertility. Avoid high Nitrogen levels. Avoid low Potasium levels.

Resistant Hybrids

gibberella

None

Lower plant populations. Balanced soil fertility. Avoid high Nitrogen levels. Avoid low Potasium levels.

Resistant Hybrids

diplodia

None

Lower plant populations. Balanced soil fertility. Avoid high Nitrogen levels. Avoid low Potasium levels.

Resistant Hybrids

 

 

DISEASE Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Smuts:

Ear Smut

None

Balanced soil fertility. Avoid high Nitrogen levels. Avoid heavy manure applications. Avoid mechanical injuries. Remove and burn galls prior to rupture.

Resistant Hybrids

Rusts:

Rust

None

Balanced soil fertility. Crop Rotation. Clean Plowing of crop residues.

Resistant Hybrids

 

 

DISEASE Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Fungal Diseases:

Eyespot

None

Balanced soil fertility. Crop Rotation. Clean Plowing of crop residues.

Resistant Hybrids

Anthracnose

None

Balanced soil fertility. Crop Rotation. Clean Plowing of crop residues.

Resistant Hybrids

 

 

Weeds

WEEDS V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Broadleaf Annual Weeds:

Jimsonweed

Yearly

<1

<1

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

lambsquarter

Yearly

90

40

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

redrootpigweed

Yearly

80

40

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

commonragweed

Yearly

80

40

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

wild mustard

Yearly

40

10

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

burcucumber

Yearly

5

40

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

Annual Grass Weeds:

crabgrass

Yearly

40

20

competition with maize

seeds and root stems

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

 

 

WEEDS V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
barnyardgrass

Yearly

30

20

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

witchgrass

Yearly

<5

<2

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

fallpanicum

Yearly

30

20

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

foxtails

Yearly

70

40

competition with maize

seeds

May - Mid June
Sept. - Mid Oct.

Broadleaf Perennial Weed
fieldbindweed

Yearly

<5

<2

competition with maize

seeds and creeping roots

May - July
Sept. - Mid Oct.

Broadleaf Annual Weed
velvetleaf

Yearly

40

40 - 60

competition with maize

seeds

May - July
Sept. - Mid Oct.

 

 

WEEDS V of Occurrence % A Infested Yield Losses Damage Lifecycle Control Timing
Perennial Grass Weeds:

yellownutsedge

Yearly

30

20

competition with maize

seeds and tubers

May - July,
Sept. - Mid Oct.

johnsongrass

Yearly

<1

<1

competition with maize

seeds and tubers

May - July,
Sept. - Mid Oct.

quackgrass

Yearly

40

20

competition with maize

seeds and rhizomes

May - July,
Sept. - Mid Oct.

 

 

WEED Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Broadleaf Annual Weeds:

See P.G.W. and A.G.W.

Jimsonweed
lambsquarter
redrootpigweed
commonragweed
wild mustard
burcucumber

 

 

WEED Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Annual Grass Weeds:

See Also B.L.A.W.

crabgrass, barnyard witchgrass

Lasso* or

Alachor* or

45.1

Flowable

Broadcast

2 -2.25qts/A

preemergence

fallpanicum

Micro-Tech* +

Alachor*

41.5

Liquid

Broadcast

2 -2.25qts/A

preemergence

foxtails

Atrazine*

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

1.25qts/A

preemergence

Sutan +

Carbamate*

85.1

Emulsion

Incorporate

4.75pts/A

pre-planting

Atrazine*

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

1qt/A

Bladex* +

Cyanazine*

90

D Flowable

Incorporate

2.25qts/A

preemergence

Atrazine*

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

1qt/A

Bicep Lite II*

Atrazine*

53.6

Liquid

Incorporate

2.4qts/A

preemergence

Bicep Lite II* +

Atrazine*

53.6

Liquid

Broadcast

2.4qts/A

preemergence

Princep

Simazine

41.9

Liquid

1qt/A

Prowl +

Pendmethaline

37.4

EmulsionC

Incorporate

3.6pts/A

preemergence

Atrazine*

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

1.25qts/A

 

 

WEED Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
Broadleaf Annual Weeds:

fieldbindweed

Banvel

Dicamba

48.2

Soluble

Foliar

0.5pts/A

postemergence

2-3 seasons

2,4,D

velvetleaf

Prowl +

Pendimethaline

37.4

EmulsionC

Foliar

3.6pts/A

postemergence

Atrazine* +

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

Foliar

1.25qts/A

Bladex*

Cyanazine*

90

D Flowable

Foliar

2.2lbs/A

Buctril

Bromoxynil

33.4

EmulsionC

Foliar

1 - 1.5pts/A

postemergence

Banvel

Dicamba

48.2

Soluble

Foliar

0.5 - 1pts/A

postemergence

Banvel +

Dicamba

48.2

Soluble

Foliar

0.5pts/A

postemergence

Sencor

75

D Flowable

2ozs/A

Perennial Grass Weeds

See Also A.G.W. and B.L.A.W.

 

 

WEED Trade Name Chemical % A.I. % Crop Treat Form App. Type App. Rate App. Time # Appls. Days 2 Harvest
yellownutsedge

johnsongrass

Laddok*

Bentazon*

27

Soluble

Foliar

2.3pts/A

postemergence

Dual II +

Metolachlor

84.4

Emulsion

Incorporate

2 - 2.5pts/A

preplanting

Atrazine*

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

1.67qts/A

Sutan +

Carbamate

85.1

Emulsion

Incorporate

4.75 - 7.3pts/A

preplanting

Atrazine*

Atrazine*

43

Liquid

1qt/A

quackgrass

Roundup Ultra

Glyphosate

41

Liquid

Foliar

1 - 2qts/A

postemergence

Accent*

Nicrosulfuron

75

S Powder

Foliar

0.67ozs/A

postemergence

Beacon*

Primisulfuron

75

Granule

Foliar

0.76ozs/A

postemergence

 

 

WEED Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Broadleaf Annual Weeds:

Jimsonweed

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

Poisonous Plant

lambsquarter

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

redrootpigweed

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

commonragweed

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

wild mustard

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

burcucumber

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

Difficulty Harvesting When Established

 

 

WEED Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Annual Grass Weeds:

crabgrass

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

barnyardgrass

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

witchgrass

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

fallpanicum

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

foxtails

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

 

 

WEED Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Broadleaf Perennial Weeds:

fieldbindweed

Plowing & Fitting Cultivars

None

Spread By Tillage Activities, Difficulty Harvesting When Established.

Broadleaf Annual Weed

velvetleaf

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

 

 

WEED Alternatives Cultural Biological Issues
Perennial Grass Weeds:

yellownutsedge

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

johnsongrass

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

quackgrass

Plowing & Fitting Cultivation

None

Contacts

Alan B. Gotlieb, Ph.D.
Plant and Soil Science Department
University of Vermont
(802) 656-0474
Alan.Gotlieb@uvm.edu

Sidney C. Bosworth, Ph.D.
Plant and Soil Science Department
University of Vermont
(802) 656-0478
Sidney.Bosworth@uvm.edu

Daren P. Nicholson, MS
Plant and Soil Science Department
University of Vermont
(802) 656-0475
Daren.Nicholson@uvm.edu

 

References

  • Compendium of Corn Diseases, 2nd ed., ed. Malcolm C. Shurtleff, 1980. The American Phytopathological Society, St. Paul, Minnesota.

  • Cornell Recommends for Integrated Field Crop Management, 1997. Cornell Cooperative Extension, Ithaca, NY.

  • The Field Crop Weed Control Guide, ed. Nora Serotkin and Stacy Tibbetts, 1998. The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA.


Database and web development by the NSF Center for Integrated Pest Managment located at North Carolina State University. All materials may be used freely with credit to the USDA.

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Last updated: September 13, 2010