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FORMULATION OF ENTOMOPATHOGENS FOR THE CONTROL OF GRASSHOPPERS AND LOCUSTS

  • D. Moore (a1) and R.W. Caudwell (a2)

Abstract

Successful development of a biological pesticide requires attention not only to the biological agent, but also to formulation, application, and the biology of the pest–pathogen interaction in the field. Emphasis in our review is given to fungi, Metarhizium spp. and Beauveria bassiana (Balsamo) Vuillemin, as the most suitable agents, and oil-based ULV formulations or baits as the most promising application techniques for use with locusts and grasshoppers. The efficacy of the pathogen isolate must be maximized; selection is aimed at those that are suitably virulent, specific, and well adapted to the relevant environmental conditions. Opportunities exist for manipulation of the characteristics of the isolate by genetic means and by developments in culturing techniques. Formulation requirements are stability during storage and the ability to carry the active ingredient successfully to the target insect at application. Likely storage methods for fungi would be as dry conidia, perhaps with clay diluents, or in oils; the characteristics of both are briefly discussed. At application, efficacy of dose transfer and protection of the biological agent against environmental constraints such as UV radiation are needed. Baits have advantages in terms of dose transfer but logistical problems associated with the bulkiness of the carrier remain. Technological advances, including those that offer the prospect of carrier production in situ from dense precursors, and better knowledge of feeding behaviour have improved the prospects for baits. Multi-disciplinary research reducing dependency on the biological agent and exploiting formulation chemistry and application technology is required in developing biological pesticides.

Le succès d'un pesticide biologique suppose le choix judicieux de l'agent de lutte lui-même, mais aussi sa préparation adéquate, son application au bon moment et selon la bonne technique et l'étude de la biologie des interactions organisme–pathogène en nature. La révision présentée ici s'attarde surtout à l'emploi des champignons Metarhizium spp. et Beauveria bassiana (Balsamo) Vuillemin qui sont considérés comme les meilleurs agents, aux préparations ultra-légères à base d'huile ou aux appâts, considérés comme les techniques d'application les plus prometteuses dans la lutte contre les criquets. L'efficacité de l'isolat pathogène doit être maximisée; celui-ci doit être suffisamment virulent, spécifique et bien adapté aux conditions environnementales dans lesquelles il sera utilisé. La manipulation des caractéristiques d'un isolat pathogène est possible par des méthodes génétiques et par raffinement des techniques de culture. Les caractéristiques d'une bonne préparation sont sa stabilité durant l'entreposage et son efficacité à véhiculer les ingrédients actifs jusqu'aux insectes-cibles au moment de l'application. La méthode d'entreposage la plus efficace est probablement la dilution de conidies séchées dans des diluants de l'argile ou dans des huiles; les caractéristiques de ces deux types de milieux sont examinées. Au moment de l'application, il faut assurer l'efficacité de transmission de la dose et la protection de l'agent contre les contraintes du milieu, entre autres les rayons UV. Les appâts permettent la transmission efficace des doses, mais comportent des contraintes logistiques associées au volume excessif du substrat. Les progrès technologiques, notamment ceux qui offrent la possibilité de produire des substrats in situ à partir de précurseurs compacts, et une meilleure connaissance des habitudes alimentaires des insectes cibles rendront probablement plus accessible l'utilisation d'appâts. La préparation de pesticides biologiques suppose donc une recherche multi-disciplinaire qui s'attarde moins à l'agent biologique lui-même qu'à la chimie de la préparation et à la technologie d'application. [Traduit par la Rédaction]

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FORMULATION OF ENTOMOPATHOGENS FOR THE CONTROL OF GRASSHOPPERS AND LOCUSTS

  • D. Moore (a1) and R.W. Caudwell (a2)

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