MANAGEMENT OF THE COTTON BOLL WEEVIL WITH ATTRACT-AND-KILL-DEVICES
Mar 13, 2017

Crop Protection WCRC Croprotection-NorthAmerica WCRC1
Abstract                                                                         Back to Table of contents

Poison baits such as molasses laced with arsenic were employed against the cotton boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis grandis Boheman, soon after the pest entered the United States in 1893 but were never effective. The search for an effective attracticide continued for nearly a century. New interest in attracticide research was spurred by the discovery and synthesis of Grandlure®, the boll weevil pheromone, in 1969. Grandlure® has been employed in traps for monitoring boll weevil populations and is highly attractive to both sexes early and late in the growing season. Scientists at the Boll Weevil Research Unit, ARS, USDA, Mississippi State, Mississippi, have developed an attract-and-kill device that incorporates Grandlure®, feeding stimulants and a toxicant. Laboratory and field tests with the device, the Boll Weevil Bait Stick (BWBS), have been carried out for the last four years. Area-wide field tests in Tennessee and Georgia have demonstrated significant suppression. Improvements in the BWBS and the methods of use are ongoing. The technology has been granted a U.S. Patent and is registered for commercial use by the Environmental Protection Agency. The attract-and-kill concept may prove to be an economical, effective and environmentally sound approach to a major pest problem.

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