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RED CENTRE ‘SILENT ASSASSINS’

Pest Manager Murray Mitchell explains why Bithor Dual Action is the insecticide of choice for his team at Murray Pest Control in Alice Springs. 

Murray Pest Control serving clients in Alice Springs and throughout the Red Centre region of the Northern Territory are now also known as the Silent Assassins, following their uptake of Ensystex’s pioneering new formulation chemistry, Bithor Dual Action, a totally original, state-of-the-art product from Ensystex’s Australian research and development laboratories.

Bithor Dual Action offers a unique dual mode of action combining two powerful and effective residual insecticides, with two totally different modes of action, to create an unstoppable killing weapon for professional pest managers.

Murray Mitchell, senior technician with Murray Pest Control in Alice Springs notes that, “Since the beginning, we have always held one inflexible prerequisite for our business – to provide the highest quality pest services. You don’t grow into an industry leader over more than five decades by offering anything less. So it was only natural that we became one of the first pest control companies in Australia to achieve Quality Assurance Certification through compliance with ISO 9001:2008.

“This means we are always very careful in only selecting the best products for the job at hand. In the Territory the weather conditions are extreme, leading to some of the nation’s toughest pest challenges. High humidity, high temperatures and lots of sun create ideal conditions for pest insects to breed, whilst at the same time placing enormous stress on the chemicals available.

“We have always found Ensystex to be at the cutting edge for supply of quality products with top technical support and backup. So when Chris Krawec, Ensystex’s area manager, presented us with the benefits of Bithor Dual Action, we decided to give it a go and include it in our chemical evaluation program. After carefully monitoring the results with Bithor Dual Action we were convinced we had another game-changing product from Ensystex. Bithor Dual Action is now our first choice for pest insect management.”

Bithor Dual Action is the first time bifenthrin and imidacloprid have been combined and it certainly meets the claims of the Silent Assassins. The pests do not detect the presence of the product, and it stays in place, killing quickly and with a longer residual performance than other products.

Regional director, Steve Broadbent said, “One of the secrets to the success of making this product non-repellent is our Blended Active Concentrate (BAC) Technology. The two actives are milled and blended together so they meld into one.

“However, to further understand why Bithor Dual Action combines two actives and uniquely remains non-repellent, we also need to look at the molecular structure of bifenthrin which is a non-cyano pyrethroid. Other pyrethroids, e.g. beta-cyfluthrin and deltamethrin possess a cyano group in their molecular structure. The cyano group in chemistry is a functional group that consists of a carbon atom joined to a nitrogen atom by a triple bond.

“The stinging, burning, or tingling sensations that are often experienced by pest managers handling pyrethroids are most prevalent with exposure to pyrethroids whose structures include a cyano-group. The toxicity of pyrethroids in mammals is caused by similar mechanisms as the insecticidal activity. These properties are usually correlated, and hence the high repellence to insects noted with cyano-group pyrethroids like beta-cyfluthrin, deltamethrin, cypermethrin and lambda-cyhalothrin.

“Since bifenthrin, exclusively for a long-lasting residual pyrethroid, does not contain any cyano-group, and because of the Blended Active Concentrate Technology employed in the formulation process, we create our Silent Assassins. Since the resulting odourless, water-based micro- suspension concentrate is non-repellent, the insects will remain in contact with treated surfaces longer, unaware they are acquiring a lethal dose.”

Mr Broadbent further explained, “By using two residual actives from two totally different chemical groups and combining them together as one, we also create a synergistic effect, with each active intensifying the effects of the other. This means the resultant Bithor Dual Action is more powerful than either of the actives on their own, so professional pest managers can kill even the toughest pests, including pyrethroid tolerant strains.”

Bithor Dual Action is registered for the control of a wide range of pests, indoors and outdoors, including bed bugs. Trials with the Department of Medical Entomology, ICPMR, Westmead Hospital against the common bed bug (Cimex lectularius) and with Medical Entomology in Thailand against the tropical bed bug (Cimex hemipterus) showed Bithor Dual Action was highly efficacious in the control of both species, including pyrethroid resistant strains. This further highlights the benefits of combining the two actives from two different chemical groups.

“Imidacloprid is a neonicotinoid insecticide that acts as a synaptic toxin. It mimics the actions of the neurotransmitter, acetylcholine at the nerve synapse. Acetylcholine passes the nerve cell message across the synaptic gap.

The acetylcholine is then broken down by the enzyme cholinesterase. However, cholinesterase cannot break down imidacloprid, so the nerve cells are continually stimulated, resulting in neural overdose and death.

“In total contrast, bifenthrin is a pyrethroid insecticide that acts as an axonic toxin. The nerve axon (fibre) is electrically polarised; when a message passes along the axon it does so through the effects of sodium and potassium ‘gates’. Pyrethroids affect the polarity of the nerve axon by keeping the ‘sodium gates’ open, so the insects go into convulsions and die.

“Consequently Bithor Dual Action is uniquely a non-repellent product with two actives that offers improved performance in the market.”