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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: BIOLOGICALLY BASED TECHNIQUES FOR MANAGEMENT OF VEGETABLE PESTS

Location: Vegetable Research

Title: Effects of spinosad and neem on the efficacy of a nucleopolyhedrovirus on pickleworm larvae

Authors
item Jackson, David
item Shapiro, M -
item Shepard, B -

Submitted to: Journal of Agricultural and Urban Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 2014
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Pickleworms are a major pest of cucumbers and summer squash in the eastern U.S. Late-season crops often are sprayed with insecticides to control this pest and results at times are unsatisfactory. Thus, there is a need for new biologically-based control tactics, such as insect viruses, for control of pickleworms on cucurbits. ARS scientists working in South Carolina with Clemson scientists previously found a naturally occurring virus from the velvetbean caterpillar that is moderately effective at killing pickleworm larvae, and proposed that the effectiveness of these viruses could be enhanced with certain additives, including sunlight protectants, feeding stimulants, and insecticides. Therefore, the scientists evaluated the effects of mixing this virus with two biorational insecticides, neem and spinosad. In these experiments, neem had no additive effects in combination with the virus. However, combinations of the virus with spinosad showed enhanced efficacy against pickleworm larvae. These biorational insecticides are compatible with nucleopolyhedrovirus viruses (NPV), and may be useful in management of this primary pest of cucurbits. These reseach results are of great interest to cucumber producers and state extension advisors looking for new strategies to control the damaging pickleworm.

Technical Abstract: A neem formulation (Neemix® 4.5) and spinosad (SpinTor® 2SC) were tested for their effects when mixed with the multicapsid nucleopolyhedrovirus virus (AgMNPV) from the velvetbean caterpillar, Anticarsia gemmatalis Hübner (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), for control of pickleworm larvae, Diaphania nitidalis (Stoll) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae). In these experiments, neem had no additive effects in combination with AgMNPV. However, combinations of AgMNPV with spinosad as low as 1.0 x10-6 of the original 22.8% suspension showed enhanced efficacy against pickleworm larvae. These biorational insecticides are compatible with NPVs, and may be useful in management of this primary pest of cucurbits.

Last Modified: 8/30/2014
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