ExoSex Bait- A New Product to Control Crop Eating Insects

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Description and Advantages

Professor Philip Howse of the School of Biological Science at Southampton University, Southern England has developed a technique called ExoSex Bait Station, which can be used to control crop-eating insects.

The technique is non-toxic to humans, environmentally friendly and does not result in insect developing natural resistance. It is an effective substitute to chemical sprays or blanket pheromone mating - disruption treatments. Electrostatic powder is used to coat insect with pheromone, a slow-acting (natural) pesticide. Each type of trap contains a pheromone specific to the target insect and by simply changing the pheromone the trap can be configured to catch a different insect. About 12 insect species have so far been tested with this technique in field trials in the United Kingdom, South Africa and New Zealand. The trap houses a plate containing a series of small wells filled with a female pheromone. The male of the species is attracted by the female pheromone and as it takes off inside this trap the down drought creates cloud of charged particles of the pheromone, a slow-acting but natural pesticide. ExoSex is a low-cost system, made of laminated cardboard or plastic. It is a simply constructed and assembled design which can be easily configured for different target insect species.


PTI Science Service, December 1-15, 2000,