, Volume 46, Issue 2, pp 247–254 | Cite as

Potential biopesticides for crucifer flea beetle, Phyllotreta cruciferae (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) management under dryland canola production in Montana

  • Shabeg Singh Briar
  • Frank Antwi
  • Govinda Shrestha
  • Anamika Sharma
  • Gadi V. P. Reddy


The crucifer flea beetle, Phyllotreta cruciferae (Goeze), is an economically important and dominant pest of canola (Brassica napus L) in the Northern Great Plains of the USA. The current flea beetle management strategy is based on using synthetic chemical treated seeds and if necessary, foliar spray of chemicals at canola seedlings in early spring for targeting adult population. However, there is an increasing demand for development of alternative management strategies for P. cruciferae pertaining to concerns over the development of resistance to synthetic insecticides and non-target effects on pollinators and other beneficial insects. Replicated field trials were conducted to test the efficacy of several commercially available biopesticides including Entrust® (spinosad), entomopathogenic nematode Steinernema feltiae + Barricade® (polymer gel 1%), Aza-Direct® (azadirachtin), Pyganic 1.4® EC (pyrethrin), Grandevo® SC (Chromobacterium subtsugae), Venerate® XC (Heat killed Burkholderia sp. strain A396 as seed treatment and foliar application) and Gaucho® (imidacloprid) (chemical check) for the P. cruciferae management at two locations (Conrad and Sweetgrass) of Montana in 2016. Biopesticide products were evaluated based on canola leaf area injury ratings and seed yield levels. Although, there was no clear trend of canola yield increase, selected biopesticide treatments were effective in maintaining low leaf area injury ratings as compared to untreated control. Entrust was able to maintain low leaf area injury ratings (8.5–14.5%) when compared to untreated control (16.0–21.4%) at both the locations. Entomopathogenic nematodes, Steinernema feltiae + Barricade® and Venerate® applied as foliar treatments maintained significantly lower feeding injury pressure at Sweetgrass (11.8%) and Conrad (13.4%) locations respectively, when compared to the untreated control. Our study results suggest that these biopesticide treatment results were comparable in efficacy to the chemical seed treatment Gaucho®. Other two biopesticide products- Aza-Direct® and Pyganic 1.4® EC treatments did not provide effective control of P. cruciferae at both the locations.


Entrust Spinosad Entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) Steinernema feltiae Barricade Venerate 



This material is based upon work that is supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Multistate Project S-1052, and the Working Group on Improving Microbial Control of Arthropod Pests Covering Research in Montana under Accession # 232056. We would also like to thank John Miller, Amber Ferda and Julie Prewett for assistance with field work.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors disclose no potential conflicts of interest associated with this manuscript.


  1. Alberta Agriculture and Forestry (2016). Weather report; Available from: Cited 15 Nov 2017.
  2. Antwi, F. B., & Reddy, G. V. P. (2016). Efficacy of entomopathogenic nematodes and sprayable polymer gel against crucifer flea beetle (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) on canola. Journal of Economic Entomology, 109, 1706–1712.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Antwi, F., Olson, D., & Knodel, J. (2007a). Comparative evaluation and economic potential of ecorational versus chemical insecticides for crucifer flea beetle (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) management in canola. Journal of Economic Entomology, 100, 710–716.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Antwi, F., Olson, D., & Carey, D. (2007b). Comparisons of ecorational and chemical insecticides against crucifer flea beetle (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) on canola. Journal of Economic Entomology, 100, 1201–1209.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Arthurs, S., Heinz, K., & Prasifka, J. (2004). An analysis of using entomopathogenic nematodes against above-ground pests. Bulletin of Entomological Research, 94, 297–306.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Boopathi, T., Pathak, K. A., Ngachan, S., & Nabajyoti, D. (2010). Evaluation of neem oil and insecticides against Phyllotreta cruciferae on broccoli. Annals of Plant Protection Science, 18, 236–237.Google Scholar
  7. Burgess, L. (1977). Flea beetles (Coleopetra: Chrysomelidae) attacking rape cropsin the Canadian prairie provinces. The Canadian Entomologist, 109, 21–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Copping, L. G., & Menn, J. J. (2000). Biopesticides: a review of their action, applications and efficacy. Pest Management Science, 56, 651–676.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Elliott, R. H., Benjamin, M. C., & Gillott, C. (2007). Laboratory studies of the toxicity of spinosad and deltamethrin to Phyllotreta cruciferae (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). The Canadian Entomologist, 139, 534–544.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Fang, L., & Subramanyam, B. (2003). Activity of spinosad against adults of Rhyzopertha dominica (F.) (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae) is not affected by wheat temperature and moisture. Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society, 76, 529–532.Google Scholar
  11. Gaugler, R. (1988). Ecological considerations in the biological control of soil-inhabiting insects with entomopathogenic nematodes. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment, 24, 351–360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hajek, A. E., Soper, R. S., Roberts, D. W., Anderson, T. E., Biever, K. D., Ferro, D. N., Leburn, R. A., & Storch, R. H. (1987). Foliar applications of Beauveria bassiana (Balsamo) for control of the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemllineata (Say) (Coleoptera, Chrysomelidae), an overview of pilot test results from the northern United States. The Canadian Entomologist, 119, 959–974.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hominick, W. M., Reid, A. P., Bohan, D. A., & Briscoe, B. R. (1996). Entomopathogenic nematodes: biodiversity, geographical distribution and the convention on biological diversity. Biocontrol Science and Technology, 6, 317–331.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Jackson, T. A. (1999). Factors in the success and failure of microbial controlagents for soil dwelling pests Integrated. Pest Management Reviews, 4, 281–285.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kaya, H. K. (1990). Soil ecology. In R. Gaugler & H. K. Kaya (Eds.), Entomopathogenic nematodes in biological control (pp. 93–115). Boca Raton: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  16. Knodel, J. J. (2017). Flea Beetles (Phyllotreta spp.) and Their Management I. In G. V. P. Reddy (Ed.), Integrated Management of Insect Pests on Canola and Other Brassica Oilseed Crops (pp. 1–12). Oxfordshire: CABI.Google Scholar
  17. Lamb, R. (1984). Effects of flea beetles, Phyllotreta spp.(Chrysomelidae: Coleoptera), on the survival, growth, seed yield and quality of canola, rape and yellow mustard. The Canadian Entomologist, 116, 269–280.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Lamb, R. (1988). Assessing the susceptibility of crucifer seedlings to flea beetle (Phyllotreta spp.) damage. Canadian Journal of Plant Science, 68, 85–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Lamb, R., & Turnock, W. (1982). Economics of insecticidal control of flea beetles (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) attacking rape in Canada. The Canadian Entomologist, 114, 827–840.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Liu, T. X., & Stansly, P. A. (1995). Toxicity and repellency of some biorational insecticides to Bemisia argentifolii on tomato plants Entomologia. Experimentalis et Applicata, 74, 137–143.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Madder, D., & Stemeroff, M. (1988). The economics of insect control on wheat, corn, and canola in Canada, 1980-1985 The economics of insect control on wheat, corn, and canola in Canada, 1980-1985. Bulletin of Entomological Society of Canada, 20, 1–22.Google Scholar
  22. Maletta, M., Henninger, M., & Holmstrom, K. (2006). Potato leafhopper control and plastic mulch culture in organic potato production. HortTechnology, 16, 199–204.Google Scholar
  23. NRCS (2016) United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service. Weather report; Available from: Cited 15 Nov 2017.
  24. OEPP/EPPO (2004) Efficacy evaluation of insecticides. Phyllotreta spp. On rape, pp. 242–244. OEPP/EPPO Bull. Pp 1/218.Google Scholar
  25. Reddy, G. V. P., Tangtrakulwanich, K., Wu, S., Miller, J. H., Ophus, V. L., & Prewett, J. (2014). Sustainable management tactics for control of Phyllotreta cruciferae (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) on canola in Montana. Journal of Economic Entomology, 107, 661–666.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. SAS Institute Inc. (2017). 9.4 In-Database Products, User’s Guide (5th ed.). Cary: SAS Publishers.Google Scholar
  27. Seaman, A. J., Lange, H. W., & Shelton, A. M. (2015). Swede midge, Diamondback moth, and imported cabbageworm control with insecticides allowed for organic production, 2014. Arthropod Management Tests, 40, E48. Scholar
  28. Shapiro-Ilan, D. I., Cottrell, T. E., Mizell, R. F., Horton, D. L., Behle, R. W., & Dunlap, C. A. (2010). Efficacy of Steinernema carpocapsae for control of the lesser peachtree borer, Synanthedon pictipes: Improved aboveground suppression with a novel gel application. Biological Control, 54, 23–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Shapiro-Ilan, D. I., Cottrell, T. E., Mizell, R. F., & Horton, D. L. (2016). Efficacy of Steinernema carpocapsae plus fire gel applied as a single spray for control of the lesser peachtree borer, Synanthedon pictipes. Biological Control, 94, 33–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Shrestha, G., & Reddy, G. V. P. (2017). Field efficacy of insect pathogen, botanical and jasmonic acid for the management of wheat midge Sitodiplosis mosellana and the impact on adult parasitoid Macroglenes penetrans populations in spring wheat. Insect Sci.
  31. Shrestha, G., Enkegaard, A., & Steenberg, T. (2015). Laboratory and semi-field evaluation of Beauveria bassiana (Ascomycota: Hypocreales) against the lettuce aphid, Nasonovia ribisnigri (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Biological Control, 85, 37–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Soroka, J., Grenkow, L., Otani, J., Gavloski, J., & Olfert, O. (2018). Flea beetle (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) species in canola (Brassicaceae) on the northern Great Plains of North America. The Canadian Entomologist, 150, 1–16.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Sparks, T. C., Crouse, G. D., & Durst, G. (2001). Natural products as insecticides: the biology, biochemistry and quantitative structure-activity relationships of spinosyns and spinosoids. Pest Management Science, 57, 896–905.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. Thomas, P. (2003). Canola growers manual. Winnipeg: Canola Council of Canada.Google Scholar
  35. Thompson, G. D., Dutton, R., & Sparks, T. C. (2000). Spinosad- a case study: an example from a natural products discovery programme. Pest Management Science, 56, 696–702.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Turnock, W., & Turnbull, S. (1994). The development of resistance to insecticides by the crucifer flea beetle, Phyllotreta cruciferae (Goeze). The Canadian Entomologist, 126, 1369–1375.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Ware, G. W. (1989). The pesticide book (3rd ed.). Fresno: Thompson Publications.Google Scholar
  38. Xu, C., Clercq, P. D., Moens, M., Chen, S., & Han, R. (2010). Efficacy of entomopathogenic nematodes (Rhabditida: Sternenematidae and Heterorhabditidae) against the striped flea beetle, Phyllotreta striolata. BioControl, 55, 789–797.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shabeg Singh Briar
    • 1
  • Frank Antwi
    • 1
  • Govinda Shrestha
    • 1
  • Anamika Sharma
    • 1
  • Gadi V. P. Reddy
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Research Centers, Western Triangle Agricultural Research CenterMontana State UniversityConradUSA

Personalised recommendations