Compatibility of the parasitoid Spalangia endius (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) and insecticides against Musca domestica (Diptera: Muscidae) as evaluated by a new index.
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Various insecticides for the control of the house fly Musca domestica L. were tested for compatibility with a biological control agent, the pupal parasitoid Spalangia endius Walker. Bioassays used the mode in which each organism was expected to be harmed by the insecticides, a surface contact bioassay for S. endius and a feeding bioassay for M. domestica. A Pesticide Compatibility Index (PCI) was created that allows comparison of LC50 values when the mode of exposure to a pesticide differs. First LC50 values were converted into units of prescribed dosages (LPR = LC50-to-prescribed dosage ratio). This study used dosages from labels of granular baits. PCI is the ratio of LPRbiological control agent to LPRpest. For these PCI values, order of compatibility with S. endius was spinosad > thiamethoxam > dinotefuran > methomyl > imidacloprid. That spinosad was better than imidacloprid or methomyl, both for parasitoid survival and for killing flies, is consistent with conclusions from the LC50 values. Permethrin and nitenpyram were also tested, but their PCIs were not calculated. Permethrin is prescribed as a contact insecticide against flies rather than being consumed as a bait, and nitenpyram has not been formulated as a fly insecticide. Compared to the other insecticides in terms of LC50 values, permethrin was moderately toxic to S. endius but one of the most toxic for M. domestica; whereas nitenpyram was least toxic for both S. endius and the flies.
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