2023 - BLS and FHB Survey Tour

North Dakota (July 9th - 14th) 

Montana (July 14th, 18th)

Idaho (July 15-17)

Current Destinations 

Protocol for Sampling Wheat or Barley Spikes Symptomatic with Fusarium head blight


Thank you for collaborating on this study of FHB-symptomatic wheat and barley spikes! The purpose is to determine the occurrence of several Fusarium species and their mycotoxins in head-blighted spikes from commercial grain fields. 


For each field, please collect into:

1.     Paper bag #1:  60 symptomatic spikes from locations in the field as widely separated as is practical.  A suggested sampling pattern is shown below. 


2.     Paper bag #2:  Six small pieces of debris from the previous crop, one piece of debris per each of 6 passes in the field. (If this part is too time-consuming, please omit.)


For each field, please record:                     

1.     Nearest street address:  _________________________________________________


2.     GPS Coordinates:  _________________________________

3.     Estimated percentage of all spikes that have FHB symptoms (e.g., 50-100%, 30-49%, 20-29% or <20%): _________

4.     Average severity on a blighted spike (what % of a symptomatic spike is affected, on average): _________

5.     (If possible) Name and phone number of field manager or farm owner: 




6.     If you are able (if not, we will make phone calls):

a.     estimated date of heading or flowering:  ____________________


b.     variety _________________________


c.      tillage history __________________________________________


d.     previous crop __________________________________________


Please send samples to:  Briana Whitaker, USDA-ARS, 1815 N University St, Peoria, IL 61604.  Questions:  336-269-1063 (cell)


Suggested sampling pattern:  start at one corner of the field.  Move along the row direction, collecting about 10 spikes in each of 6 passes across the field, as shown in the figure to the right.