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Risk assessment of crop protection used to control whitefly

The generalist mirid predator Macrolophus basicornis may contribute to Integrated Pest Management (IPM) of Bemisia tabaci in tomato crops. It is important to know the compatibility of the chemicals used to control this pest with this promising biological control agent. Seven insecticides were tested to investigate their toxicity to the predator.

For four of the products, the LC50 for adults were determined. Buprofezin, cyantraniliprole and spiromesifen did not cause lethality and were classified as harmless. Acetamiprid, bifenthrin, etofenprox + acetamiprid and pyriproxyfen + acetamiprid caused acute toxicity and were classified as harmful. LT50 for all harmful insecticides were relatively low, ranging from 1.8 to 3.2 days. Moreover, these four insecticides have low LC50, with acetamiprid (0.26 mg a.i. L−1) as the lowest, followed by bifenthrin (0.38 mg a.i. L−1), etofenprox + acetamiprid (4.80 mg a.i. L−1) and pyriproxyfen + acetamiprid (8.71 mg a.i. L−1).

However, the calculated risk quotient (RQ) values demonstrated that these insecticides were mostly ecologically safe for this predator, except for acetamiprid, classified as slightly to moderately toxic. The present study can contribute to the use of M. basicornis as a biological control agent on tomato crops and to compatible use with the insecticides tested, according to IPM strategies.

Read the complete article at

Fagundes Matioli, Thaís & Silva, Mariana & Pazini, Juliano & Barroso, Geovanny & Gabriela, Júlia & Vieira, Aleixo & Yamamoto, Pedro. (2021). Risk Assessment of Insecticides Used in Tomato to Control Whitefly on the Predator Macrolophus basicornis (Hemiptera: Miridae). Insects. 12. 1-14. 10.3390/insects12121092.  

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