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Prevention of insecticide resistance in Colorado Potato Beetles

A number of practical tips are provided to potato growers to prevent, rather than mitigate, the development of Colorado Potato Beetle insecticide resistance in a recent publication of the University of Maine in the US. The publication is authored by Associate Professor Andrei Alyokhin, Extension Professor James Dwyer, and Assistant Extension Professor Andrew Plant.

The specialists say in the publication that preventing resistance is as essential a part of good insecticide stewardship as minimizing drift or wearing personal protective equipment. Similar to most other problems, resistance is more easily avoided than mitigated. Don’t wait until insecticide failure becomes noticeable in the field, as you may find yourself with few control options.

The specialists provide details on the following preventive practices incorporated into a prevention management system:

  1. Identify fields where Colorado potato beetles are at high risk of developing resistance.
  2. Rotate among different insecticide mode-of-action groups.
  3. Use the full label rate of insecticides.
  4. Do not rely on insecticides alone.
  5. Use economic thresholds when making decisions about spraying.
  6. Leave untreated refuges in which susceptible beetles can survive.

Go here to read the full publication on the University of Maine website