Chemical control Chemical control of carpophilus beetle in stone fruit is often undertaken using bifenthrin, a pyrethroid, but it’s not registered for use in almonds. Despite it being available for use by Victorian almond growers due to their off-label use laws, it is not recommended. Bifenthrin commonly results in suppression but not control of beetle numbers as it only relies on contact and ingestion. The burrowing behaviour within a kernel protected by a husk and shell, and new incoming beetle flights will be difficult if not impossible to treat. In addition, bifenthrin is also a broad spectrum insecticide that is very detrimental to many beneficial insecticides and results in two-spot mite flare-ups that require further chemical control that is also very expensive. If uncontrolled, two-spot mites will cause in-season defoliation and many flow-on effects as a result. The flow- on effects of in-season defoliation should be fresh in everyone’s mind following the widespread rust event during the 2010/11 season. In addition to the issues raised above, there is no bifenthrin MRL on almonds sold on the Australian market. Alternative chemicals for the control of carpophilus beetle will be investigated by the ABA. References Hossain, M.S. et al. 2009. Investigation of an area wide approach to control carpophilus beetle in stone fruit. HAL Project SF05006/SF05022. Williams D.G. 2013. Carpophilus beetles, PowerPoint presentation, Department of Environment and Primary Industries, Victoria.
The aggregation pheromone and co- attractant are to be placed every 2 weeks and ensure the aggregation pheromone and co-attractant are not disposed in the block. Warning: It is not recommended to monitor populations with the attract and kill option as it includes an aggregation pheromone that could see populations drawn into the monitored block or property thereby increasing the pest pressure. Research has not been completed to ascertain the attractive radius of the pheromone. The deployment of this system in almond orchards has not been researched and registered for use, and despite it not being a treatment applied to the tree or crop it still requires APVMA registration for use in almonds. The only exception are Victorian growers who could still use it due to their off-label chemical use laws, but its precise use pattern in almonds is not known. Victorian growers are to contact the DEPI Chemical Standards Officer for clarification around off-label use. The ABA is currently applying for a Minor Use Permit (MUP) with APVMA to allow the use of the A&K by all states in the 2014/15 season. Results of this will be known in the next few months. It is worth highlighting the research trials showed the A&K system gave better control of damage and beetle numbers than insecticide treatments.
2. Feedback from your processor/marketer. This precise trace back ability is not a strong point in many almond orchards as we bulk store on-farm by variety and don’t segregate by block like most soft fruit industries. As the old adage says, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. This trace back ability needs to become a feature of the industry going forward and will be strongly promoted when we roll out our OrchardNet project next season. Please contact Brett Rosenzweig, Industry Development Officer to learn more about this project. Attract and kill DEPI Victoria has researched and developed an attract and kill (A&K) system that has recently become commercialised for the stone fruit industry. The system uses a large funnel trap hung on a star picket outside of the block and relies upon a synergy between an aggregation pheromone, a synthetic food-volatile based co-attractant, and a toxicant in the funnel trap to kill the entering beetles (Figure 4). The system is designed to draw beetles out of the block, not to monitor the population. The A&K stations in stone fruit orchards are placed upwind on the outside of the block being protected and deployed approximately 6 weeks prior to the fruit ripening at stocking rates of approximately 2-3 traps per hectare and left in the block for an additional 2 weeks after harvest. The traps are deployed before fruit ripens, to avoid competition with the volatiles from the ripening fruit.
Figure 4: Attract and kill system (photos courtesy of Insect Management Services)