Bacillus thuringiensis serovar kurstaki strain EG2348 (Bacillales: Bacillaceae) –a neglected tool for efficient oriental fruit moth (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) control
Abstract: The Oriental fruit moth (OFM), Grapholita molesta (Busck), is a major pest of stoneand pome fruit. The efficacy of close-to harvest applications of the Btk strain EG2348(formulated product: Lepinox Plus®) in controlling OFM on peach/nectarine was thereforeinvestigated in several field trials, conducted in Italy in 2008 (2 trials) and 2009 (1 trial). In eachtrial, the efficacy of the Btk EG2348-based product in reducing OFM fruit damage at harvest wascompared to that of a chemical reference treatment, a Btk-based reference treatment, and anuntreated control. In all trials, fruit damage was always significantly higher in untreated controlplots than in treated plots, with differences among treated plots not being significant. Under thesetrial conditions of medium-high pest pressure (mean fruit damage in the untreated control: 24 and40% in 2008, 12% in 2009), the mean efficacy of the Btk EG2348-based product Lepinox Plus inreducing OFM fruit damage at harvest ranged from 65 to 76%, and was always slightly, thoughnot significantly higher than that of the Btk-based and chemical reference treatment (meanefficacy: 40-63% and 54-67%, respectively). Because of its good efficacy in suppressing OFM,because it is suitable for inclusion in resistance management strategies, and because it can help toavoid the presence of inadequate levels of residues in fruit, applications of this mBCA can beconsidered an important and valuable tool for the control of OFM not only in organic farming butalso in any other pest management strategy, especially.