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Seed dressings to control slug damage in oilseed rape

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Slugs are major pests of oilseed rape that are poorly controlled by conventional bait pellets. A series of laboratory experiments investigated the potential of seed-dressings to control slug damage in this crop. Four compounds: metaldehyde, methiocarb, cinnamamide and 3,5-dimethoxycinnamic acid (DMCA) were tested at a range of doses for phytotoxicity and ability to reduce damage by Deroceras reticulatum (Müller). Metaldehyde and methiocarb were not phytotoxic at any doses, whereas all doses of cinnamamide and DMCA were. All compounds reduced slug damage, but metaldehyde and methiocarb consistently performed better than cinnamamide and DMCA. Metaldehyde and methiocarb seed-dressings were compared with baited pellets containing the same active ingredients at recommended field doses. The seed-dressings protected plants from damage by D reticulatum and Arion subfuscus (Draparnaud) as well as, or better than, baited pellets. We therefore recommend that metaldehyde and methiocarb should be field-tested as seed dressings to control slugs in oilseed rape.

© 2002 Society of Chemical Industry
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Keywords: feeding deterrents; laboratory tests; molluscicides; oilseed rape; seed dressing; slugs

Document Type: Research Article

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Publication date: 2002-07-01

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