Background and Objectives
Fig mite, Eotetranychus hirsti Baker & Pritchard (Acari: Tetranychidae), is one of the most important pests of fig trees in Iran and most parts of the world. This pest causes the leaves to fall and reduce the quantity and quality of the product. Several different insecticides have been used to control this mite.
Materials and Methods
Due to the consumption of fresh fig and in order to produce healthy crops and to develop non-chemical pesticides, the application of coconut botanical soap (Palizin® SL70%), red pepper extract (Tondexir® EC85%), and propargite (Omite®, EC57%,) were tested in the fields of Bardaskan region, during 2015-2016. The botanical insecticides (1500 & 2000 ppm concentrations), propargite acaricide (2000 ppm) and water were sprayed over the whole canopy during July to August. Samplings were carried out one day before and 3, 7, 14, 21 and 28 days after spraying. At each sampling time, the total number of egg, larvae and active stages (nymph and imago) of fig mite on 4 leaves per tree were counted. Treatments were compared based on mortality rate and efficacy percentage. Data was analyzed based on a completely block randomized design using SAS software. Mean comparison was done using Tukey's test.
The results of this study showed that there was a significant difference between all treatments and different times, on all developmental stages of fig mite. Based on the field studies, the application of botanical components, including the red pepper extract, compared with the propargite acaricide, caused a further decrease in the population of fig mites. The highest mortality rates for eggs, larvae and active stages (nymph and imago) of fig mite were observed in red pepper extract and coconut botanical soap treatments, and the lowest mortality rates was recorded in control treatment. The mean efficacy percentage of red pepper extract (2000 ppm) treatment for eggs, larvae and active stages (nymph and imago) were 97.9, 95.1, 92.2 in 3 days, 98.7, 94.2, 93.5 in 7 days, 96.0, 88.9, 89.3 in 14 days, 98.8, 93.7, 92.8 in 21 days and 97.1, 96.8 and 92.7 in 28 days after spraying, respectively. Also, the mean efficacy percentage of coconut botanical soap (2000 ppm) treatment for egg, larvae and active stages (nymph and imago) were 88.9, 89.2, 87.0 in 3 days, 89.2, 87.7, 86.3 in 7 days, 87.1, 86.0, 87.6 in 14 days, 86.6, 83.5, 83.4 in 21 days and 87.5, 87.6 and 90.9 in 28 days after spraying, respectively.
Therefore, red pepper extract (Tondexir®) spraying with 2000 ppm concentration, over the whole canopy of figs trees, were effective in decreasing fig mite damage.