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THE ZENITH OF ANT BAIT INNOVATION

Ensystex announce the addition of a new product to their Zenithor range of insect baits. 

The innovation team at Ensystex have just released another new and high performance product, Zenithor Gel Ant Bait. Ensystex regional director, Steve Broadbent, advised, “Zenithor Gel Ant Bait represents the culmination of many years of patient research, exacting science, field trials and development improvements. I can honestly say that Zenithor Gel Ant Bait truly represents the zenith of ant bait innovation.

“Our commitment has always been to develop a product that is better than anything else in this segment, so it can proudly sit alongside our best-selling granular product, Hymenopthor Ultra Granular Ant and Cockroach Bait. This challenge proved more difficult than we could ever have envisaged. There are so many factors to integrate in order to produce a high performing gel bait: high palatability for all commonly encountered pest ant species; superior gel properties to ensure bio-availability, longevity and ease of use; and performance to deliver total colony elimination.

Zenithor Gel Ant Bait provides a stable gel with a moist, viscous presentation at all times. This ensures superior consumption by ants for an extended time frame, even in hot tropical conditions. When dispensed, it forms a homogenous ‘bubble’ that maintains its shape and does not dissolve into the substrate like many gels, thus ensuring prolonged availability for consumption by ants. Whilst Zenithor remains palatable for an extended period, in reality, due to its high palatability, it’s consumed rapidly – most ant feeding occurs within the first 24-72 hours, with colony elimination mostly occurring within the first week.

“A key to unlocking the success of our formulation expertise was the selection of the (S)-isomer of indoxacarb as the active constituent. Indoxacarb is an oxadiazine insecticide, which our research has shown is most effective against insects when consumed. Although indoxacarb is a blend of (S) and (R) isomers, it is only the (S)-isomer that is insecticidally active and Zenithor Gel Ant Bait contains 0.5 g/kg of (S)-indoxacarb.

Product performance and safety is enhanced by a process referred to as ‘Zenithor Enzyme Bioactivation’. Once ingested, insects rapidly metabolise (breakdown) the (S)-indoxacarb into N-decarbomethoxyllated indoxacarb (DCJW). This metabolite is a powerful sodium channel blocker, which leads to rapid and irreversible impairment of nerve function, feeding cessation, paralysis, and death in insects.

Ants are social insects living in colonies that work together to gather food, rear young and defend the nest. There are typically three different groups of worker ants: permanent foragers, intermittent foragers and nurses. The behaviour of worker ants changes with age; young ants are nurses at first, before evolving into intermittent foragers, and finally permanent foragers. Ants less than one month old are considered young, and typically 65% of them are nurses. After one month, most become members of the pool of ants able to forage and give liquid food to the queen, soldiers or larvae by a process known as trophallaxis. The passing of indoxacarb through trophallaxis gives rise to the ‘Zenithor Viral Transfer Effect’ and is the key to elimination of the entire ant colony.

“This is also where the magic of ‘Zenithor Enzyme Bioactivation’ shines through. Since it is a liquid gel, it is easily consumed by all worker ant life-stages. They then feed it directly to the larvae, soldiers and queen. Of course, it takes time for the Zenithor to be taken into the colony and fed to all these different life-stages and so you don’t want the insecticide to work too quickly and risk bait rejection. However, since it takes a few hours for the indoxacarb to be ‘bio-activated’ by the ants, they have time to return to the colony and share the Zenithor with the entire colony, thus ensuring colony elimination.”

Mr Broadbent concluded by advising, “Professionals will be pleased to find that Ensystex have priced Zenithor very competitively.”

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