Concern Over Resistance Issues With Thrips and at Plant Insecticides in Peanuts

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There has been increasing concern over the potential for thrips to become resistant to a class of insecticides call neonicotinoids. This group of insecticides is the most widely used group in the world and are used on most agricultural crops and numerous other applications. They are used as seed treatments, in furrow applications at plant, and foliar sprays. Anytime a product receives extensive use, and insects are exposed to it in a frequent basis, the issue of resistance can rear its ugly head and it has with this group of products and thrips.

For this note, I am only going to refer to the use of Admire and peanuts. The rate we use Admire in furrow should result in good control this year. While I believe we need to start looking at a plan with the limited number of products we have for thrips control in peanuts, I do not think we should make any dramatic changes for 2015. I believe, that in most fields, Admire will provide good control of thrips this year. We are starting to introduce some new products into our peanut thrips control recommendations that will help us deal with potential resistance. However that plan needs to be assessed in the context of what we are using in the other crops in a system. Remember that if someone is not happy with the level of thrips control that is provided by the at plant insecticide (which happens every single year), we can always use acephate at 3 or 4 weeks post plant to clean up the problem.

I will work with Ames Herbert to develop a plan for resistance management, but I do not feel we should make big changes this year, Admire worked well in our test plots last year and reports I received indicate most growers were pleased with its performance. That doesn’t mean we beat it to death until it no longer works, but rather proceed with good information and a plan to ensure we can efficiently use all of our products for many years to come.

Article first appeared as North Carolina Peanut Note (PNNC-2015-004)