Submitted to: Seed Production Research at Oregon State University
Publication Type: Experiment station
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/20/2008
Publication Date: 4/1/2008
Citation: Gavin, W.E., Banowetz, G.M., Griffith, S.M., Mueller Warrant, G.W., Whittaker, G.W. 2008. Effects of baits and bait alternatives on slug mortality, egg production, and seedling survival. Seed Production Research at Oregon State University. 127:12-17. Interpretive Summary: Crop management practices used in commercial seed production including improved soil drainage, reduced tillage depths, and reductions in the use of many chemicals harmful to wildlife and soil invertebrates, have been accompanied by improved soil health and large increases in earthworm (Lumbricus terrestris L.) populations (>80 cu ft). These practices also have improved habitat for slugs, agricultural pests that reduce seed yield. Control of these pests is complicated because earthworms remove large quantities of baits intended for slug control. This study tested the efficacy of alternative slug baits that are not attractive to earthworms. These studies showed that the use of two under-used products could enhance long-term reduction of slug population build-up in fields by increasing seedling survival and slug mortality, and by reducing the number of eggs laid.
Technical Abstract: Two non-bait slug control formulations that are not attractive to earthworms including Durham 3.5 and 7.5 (3.5 and 7.5%, metaldehyde, respectively) and SlugFest AWF (all-weather-formula, 25%, metaldehyde), a liquid spray product were investigated for their efficacy in reducing egg fecundity and slug (Derocerus reticulatum) damage to seedlings. Growth chamber studies showed that both significantly reduced egg fecundity and damage to newly emerged perennial ryegrass seedlings. Slugs greater than 200 mg in weight were active in egg-laying, but that larger slugs produced significantly more eggs per animal.