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Considerations for the use of neonicotinoid pesticides in management of Bactericera cockerelli (Šulk) (Hemiptera: Triozidae)

Prager, Sean M., Vindiola, Beatriz, Kund, Gregory S., Byrne, Frank J., Trumble, John T.
Crop protection 2013 v.54 pp. 84-91
Bactericera cockerelli, Candidatus Liberibacter, Hemiptera, Triozidae, application methods, application timing, bacteria, crops, imidacloprid, irrigation, pathogens, peppers, pests, potatoes, rain, thiamethoxam, tomatoes, Texas
Bactericera cockerelli is a pest on multiple solanaceous crop plants and is the sole vector for the bacteria Candidatus Liberibacter psyllaurous. When the pathogen is present, feeding by these psyllids results in ‘vein greening’ disease in peppers and tomatoes, and “zebra chip” disease in potatoes. Currently, management is based entirely on the application of pesticides, including two neonicotinoid compounds. Populations of B. cockerelli collected in southern Texas in 2006 and 2012 were examined for reduced susceptibility and behavioral responses to imidacloprid.Tests comparing imidacloprid and thiamethoxam demonstrated that both can reduce nymph numbers in the field, but retention and effective periods vary among application methods and compounds. In addition, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam are both sensitive to the amount of water applied during irrigation. Collectedly, these results suggest that imidacloprid is unlikely to be effective in controlling B. cockerelli in south Texas. Moreover, its use needs to be carefully considered in other locations even where resistance has not yet been detected. Finally, thiamethoxam may be useful, but careful attention must be paid to irrigation and rainfall level, application method, and timing of application.