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ARS Home » Plains Area » Manhattan, Kansas » Center for Grain and Animal Health Research » Stored Product Insect and Engineering Research » Research » Research Project #425572

Research Project: Evaluation of New Strategies and Tactics to Manage Insect Pests in Mills

Location: Stored Product Insect and Engineering Research

Project Number: 3020-43000-033-04-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2013
End Date: Aug 31, 2017

The overall objective of the proposed research is to reduce or eliminate the need for structural fumigations with methyl bromide to control stored-product insect pests in mills by developing improved Integrated Pest Management Programs. The specific objectives of this proposal are to (1) improve the effectiveness of aerosol applications of pyrethrin insecticides by determining the impact of aerosol insecticide droplet size on distribution and efficacy and how application methodology can be improved both in terms of efficacy and economics; (2) determine the efficacy of chlorine dioxide, which is currently used as a disinfectant, against insect pests in order to evaluate its potential as a methyl bromide alternative; (3) evaluate the current status of research into methyl bromide alternatives against stored-product insects using a meta-analysis approach to compare efficacy and an economic analysis to compare the relative costs of different treatments; and (4) conduct training workshops to transfer this information to end users.

This project will involve cooperators from Kansas State University, Oklahoma State University, and MRI Global performing different aspects of the project. In the first objective, laboratory tests will determine the efficacy of different pyrethrin insecticide droplet sizes against the developmental stages of the confused flour beetle and in field tests the droplet sizes and their temporal and spatial pattern of deposition will be determined for commercial insecticide applications. To improve the coverage and efficacy of the aerosol treatments, the potential benefits of using fans to eliminate areas of low efficacy and reducing the length of exposure period by focusing on times when the most efficacious droplet sizes are present will be assessed. The economic costs and benefits of these alternative application methods will also be determined. In the second objective, Kansas State University collaborators will determine the effectiveness of chlorine dioxide against the confused flour beetle and field test this potential methyl bromide alternative. In the third objective, the currently available data on treatment efficacy against stored product insects will be compiled along with data generated as part of this grant and analyzed using meta-analysis to determine the effect size of the different treatments. This information will be useful in determining which methyl bromide alternatives appear viable from an efficacy standpoint. This analysis will also be coupled with an economic assessment of the costs for the different tactics. In the final objective, workshops and other training courses will be conducted to help with the transfer of information to endusers.