Response of Late-Instar Blattella germanica (Dictyoptera: Blattellidae) to Dietary Insect Growth Regulators

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Late-instar German cockroaches, Blattella germantca (L.), were used to evaluate the relative effects of single treatments and combinations of three insect growth regulators (IGRs): pyriproxyfen, fenoxycarb, and diflubenzuron. Groups of 15 males or 15 females were held for 2 wk on food treated with varying amounts of IGRs. After removal, newly mature adults were placed with untreated adults of the opposite sex. Mortality, adult phenotype (normal wings, divergent wings, curly wings, and nymphoids), and reproduction were assessed. Mortality occurred largely in the nymphal stage except when all three IGRs were combined. Neither the average number of nymphs per egg case nor hatch of egg cases from phenotypically normal cockroaches (normal wings, occasional darkening of the body) was affected in single treatments or in combinations of two IGRs, but nymphal numbers were reduced when the three IGRs were combined. Hatch from matings of insects with divergent wings varied. At low concentrations (3-10 ppm), hatch was generally normal; at high concentrations, most mating tests were unproductive. Mating tests of cockroaches with curly wings were almost always unproductive. When males with curly wings were mated, females dropped either unfertilized egg cases (no mating) or partially fertilized egg cases. Curly wing females either dropped unfertilized egg cases or failed to form egg cases because of deleterious effects on ovarian development. Nymphoids did not mate. Diflubenzuron at 100 ppm had no effect other than causing the appearance of a few insects with divergent wings. Effects on phenotype and reproduction began at 3 ppm of both pyriproxyfen and fenoxycarb and at a comparable concentration in the combination of pyriproxyfen + fenoxycarb (1 ppm each). Female sterility was complete at 100 ppm of pyriproxyfen and fenoxycarb. When pyriproxyfen or fenoxycarb was combined with equal amounts of diflubenzuron, the number of productive matings was not reduced at 6 ppm (3 ppm per each IGR). At 20 ppm (10 ppm per each IGR), a reduction in productive matings coincided with the appearance of curly wings. Complete female sterility occurred only at 600 ppm (300 ppm per IGR). The most severe effects occurred in the experiment with equal amounts of pyriproxyfen, fenoxycarb, and diflubenzuron. In addition to reduced hatch from normal phenotypes, this experiment caused complete male sterility (300 ppm; 100 ppm of each IGR). Female sterility was complete at 2:90 ppm (30 ppm of each IGR).

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 1990

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  • Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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