Growth inhibitors are one of five groups of insecticides. Growth inhibitors affect the growth and development of insects.
There are applied at a particular stage of an insects development. Growth inhibitors are designed to prevent metamorphosis thereby preventing maturity and reproduction. An example of a growth inhibiting insecticide is Pyriproxyfen.
Pyriproxyfen is a common household toxin originally designed to kill whitefly in crops. It’s now used to kill ants and fleas and is often the active ingredient in flea collars. It was Pyriproxyfen that was put into the Brazilian water supply in 2014 to control mosquito populations.
Intrepid 2F Insecticide is a growth inhibitor produced by Dow. It mimics the moulting hormone. When some insects ingest this insecticide they undergo an incomplete and developmentally lethal premature moult. It’s used on so many crops I can’t count them! Likewise, it’s used on so many insects it’s just nuts.
Like in Australia, the USA has restrictions on its use based on the registration information. This information is contained on the label. The USA label for this product is 20 pages long!
In both countries it is unlawful to use an agricultural chemical product in a way that is inconsistent with the label, unless there is a permit to do so.
Read the next blog in this series: respiratory disrupting insecticides.