Adding an IGR to a general pest treatment can significantly boost results, explains Charles McClintock of Sumitomo Chemical Australia.
When carrying out general pest treatments, many pest managers want to get in and out as quickly as possible and use their ‘go to’ general purpose insecticide for every treatment. But when it comes to flea and cockroach treatments, it certainly pays to think more carefully about the products used, especially if the desire is to provide a professional service. In this regard, insect growth regulators (IGRs) provide the opportunity for pest management professionals to deliver superior treatments.
Charles McClintock, Sumitomo business development manager, explained. “Of all the groups of chemistry used in pest control, IGRs are the least understood and most underutilised. Indeed, many pest managers are not fully aware of all the advantages of including an IGR in a mix with a broad-spectrum insecticide. Generally speaking, IGRs are more selective and longer lasting than broad- spectrum insecticides, with excellent toxicological and environment profiles.”
There are two types of IGRs used in pest control in Australia, the chitin synthesis inhibitors which primarily disrupt moulting and juvenile hormone analogues which inhibit metamorphosis, embryogenesis and egg hatch.
Sumilarv contains the juvenile hormone analogue pyriproxifen, which works on many of the life stages of both fleas and cockroaches. Sumilarv affects cockroaches by both sterilising females, which lay infertile eggs and killing nymphs late in the moulting process.
When used on fleas, Sumilarv affects all stages of the life cycle. It interferes with the hormone balance of larvae which turn into misshapen pupae or misshapen supernumerary larva which die after a short period, inhibits egg hatch and has a strong ovicidal effect on females.
“By working on multiple stages of the life cycle of these insects, Sumilarv has a greater impact on the whole population than the use of an adulticide alone,” commented Mr McClintock.
“Resistance of insects to insecticides with certain modes of action (MOA) is increasing in Australia and it is common to hear pest managers comment that “they don’t get the control they used to” from a product, particularly with some cockroach populations. We know that the repeated use of chemicals with the same MOA increases the selection pressure to build a resistant population, thereby reducing the efficacy of that product.
“One such MOA of chemistry are the synthetic pyrethroids (Group 3A Insecticides) which are sold under many brand names in Australia. Whilst these brands may contain different active ingredients, their MOA (Group 3A) is the same, so changing brands doesn’t mean changing the MOA. The inclusion of Sumilarv in a mix with your preferred broad spectrum insecticide will combat control problems with resistant populations,” claimed Mr McClintock.
“Pyriproxyfen is a very stable molecule and can remain active and available on surfaces long after the kill insecticide has been degraded. Laboratory trials on carpet by the University of Technology in Sydney have shown that pyriproxyfen still delivers >90% inhibition of flea egg hatch, 12 months after treatment. The use of Sumilarv in your mix will provide the long-term protection expected from professional treatments and help reduce potential callbacks.
“With the benign toxicity profile of pyriproxifen, it is exempt from poisons scheduling, which means customers can benefit from long term protection without any safety concerns.”
Mr McClintock concluded, “With many customers responding well to the benefit that a professional treatment can also ‘break the breeding cycle’, the real and perceived value gained by adding an IGR to a flea or cockroach treatment is significant. Better control, better residual performance, better resistance management and great safety profile, makes using Sumilarv a serious consideration for professional pest managers.”