Evaluation of Agrilus planipennis (Coleoptera: Buprestidae) control provided by emamectin benzoate and two neonicotinoid insecticides, one and two seasons after treatment

J Econ Entomol. 2011 Oct;104(5):1599-612. doi: 10.1603/ec11101.


Effective methods are needed to protect ash trees (Fraxinus spp.) from emerald ash borer, Agrilus planipennis Fairmaire (Coleoptera: Buprestidae), an invasive buprestid that has killed millions of North American ash (Fraxinus spp.) trees. We randomly assigned 175 ash trees (11.5-48.1 cm in diameter) in 25 blocks located in three study sites in Michigan to one of seven insecticide treatments in May 2007. Treatments included 1) trunk-injected emamectin benzoate; 2) trunk-injected imidacloprid; 3) basal trunk spray of dinotefuran with or 4) without Pentra-Bark, an agricultural surfactant; 5) basal trunk spray of imidacloprid with or 6) without Pentra-Bark; or (7) control. Foliar insecticide residues (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) and toxicity of leaves to adult A. planipennis (4-d bioassays) were quantified at 3-4-wk intervals posttreatment. Seven blocks of trees were felled and sampled in fall 2007 to quantify A. planipennis larval density. Half of the remaining blocks were retreated in spring 2008. Bioassays and residue analyses were repeated in summer 2008, and then all trees were sampled to assess larval density in winter. Foliage from emamectin benzoate-treated trees was highly toxic to adult A. planipennis, and larval density was < 1% of that in comparable control trees, even two seasons posttreatment. Larval densities in trees treated with trunk-injected imidacloprid in 2007 + 2008 were similar to control trees. Dinotefuran and imidacloprid were effectively translocated within trees treated with the noninvasive basal trunk sprays; the surfactant did not appreciably enhance A. planipennis control. In 2008, larval densities were 57-68% lower in trees treated with dinotefuran or imidacloprid trunk sprays in 2007 + 2008 than on controls, but densities in trees treated only in 2007 were similar to controls. Highly effective control provided by emamectin benzoate for > or = 2 yr may reduce costs or logistical issues associated with treatment.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Coleoptera*
  • Female
  • Fraxinus*
  • Guanidines*
  • Imidazoles*
  • Insect Control / economics
  • Insect Control / methods*
  • Insecticides*
  • Ivermectin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Larva
  • Male
  • Michigan
  • Neonicotinoids
  • Nitro Compounds*
  • Pesticide Residues
  • Plant Leaves
  • Population Density
  • Random Allocation
  • Seasons


  • Guanidines
  • Imidazoles
  • Insecticides
  • Neonicotinoids
  • Nitro Compounds
  • Pesticide Residues
  • dinotefuran
  • imidacloprid
  • Ivermectin
  • emamectin benzoate