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Biological Control of Western Flower Thrips

Frankliniella occidentalis, (source: Wikipedia)

Frankliniella occidentalis, (source: Wikipedia)

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This week have been published the trials that demonstrate that Paecilomyces fumosoroseus FE9901, NOFLY WP active ingredient, is effective against one of the most important agricultural pests worldwide, the western flower thrip, Franklisiella occidentalis. This insect species affects a wide range of horticultural, fruit and ornamental crops, giving significant economic losses annually.

Franklisiella occidentalis damages plants creating wounds by oviposition and also by feeding, staining them with silver specks in consequence of the contact with their saliva. This kind of trip is also a vector of the tomato spotted wilt virus, a disease that produces big economic losses globally. This insect pest persists throughout the year, although its activity decreases at cold and rainy times.

The published trials, collected in the Ecoletter issue 11 of Futureco Bioscience "Efficacy of NOFLY WP against Western Flower Thrip (Frankliniella occidentalis) on Pepper in greenhouse conditions", consisted of the implementation of NOFLY at its commercial dose, half its dose and the double of its commercial dose on pepper plants in greenhouse infected by this insect, and compared in turn with a common synthetic pesticide.

Prior to this study there were already several precedents in the literature on the potential of infection of P. fumosoroseus on some species of thrips, but most trials were at a laboratory scale and in semi-field or in pots. With this study we wanted to test its effectiveness in terms of broader and specific farming practices, like on peppers growing in greenhouses.

The results showed that NOFLY is indeed as effective as the chemical commonly used pesticide, which makes it a promising and clean alternative for biological control of thrips. More tests will be conducted, but indeed it’s good news for Futureco Bioscience, for Integrated Pest Management users, organic farmers and those professionals who support the use of products that respect the environment with zero waste.

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