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Persistence of Diflubenzuron on Conifer Forest Foliage in a Mediterranean-Climate Ecosystem Following Aerial Application

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Dimilin 45 ODC (diflubenzuron) was applied in a Mediterranean-climate conifer forest, near Vitoria, Basque Country, Spain. Pine needles were collected at post-treatment 5-day intervals for analysis of the diflubenzuron residues. A liquid chromatography method with on-line diode-array and electrochemical detection was developed for the determination of the pesticide diflubenzuron and its main metabolites: 2,6-diflurobenzamide, 4-chlorophenylurea, 4-chloroacetanilide, 4-chloroaniline and N-methyl-4-chloroaniline in forestry matrices. Aerial application at 56.3 g AI ha−1 resulted in deposition levels of the insecticide of 1080 ng g−1. Within 40-65 days following treatment, 51-73% of the insecticide had been removed from the foliage. During this period, the concentration of diflubenzuron was higher than 295 ng g−1. The only metabolite detected was 2,6-difluorobenzamide and this persisted on foliage until the first rainfalls occurred. An empirical mathematical correlation was found to express the influence of rainfall, solar radiation and temperature on the persistence of the insecticide.
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Keywords: Conifer forest; Diflubenzuron; Diode-array detection; Electrochemical detection; Liquid chromatography; Pesticides

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2003

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