Efficient Insect Growth Regulator: Diflubenzuron

Diflubenzuron is a benzoylurea class insect growth regulator. Its mechanism of action involves inhibiting chitin formation, which disrupts the normal molting and metamorphosis of pests. It also inhibits the feeding rate of insects. It is characterized by high insecticidal activity, a broad spectrum of activity, strong knockdown power, and rapid efficacy. It can control pests of the order Coleoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, Hemiptera, and Orthoptera on cotton, fruit trees, and has ovicidal activity. It is particularly effective against pests such as cotton bollworm but ineffective against mites.

Diflubenzuron Properties

Diflubenzuron is a white crystalline solid with a melting point of 228°C. The technical grade appears as a white to light yellow crystalline powder, with a density of 1.56. It has a melting point of 210-230°C, a vapor pressure of 1.2 × 10-4 mPa at 25°C, a water solubility of 0.1 mg/L at 20°C, and a solubility of 6.5 g/L in acetone. It is highly soluble in polar solvents such as acetonitrile and dimethyl sulfoxide, as well as moderately soluble in common polar solvents such as ethyl acetate, dichloromethane, and ethanol. It is sparingly soluble in nonpolar solvents such as ether, benzene, and petroleum ether. It is decomposed by alkaline substances but shows stability to light and heat. It can be stored for at least two years under normal conditions.

Diflubenzuron Toxicity

According to the toxicity classification standard for pesticides in China, diflubenzuron is classified as a low-toxicity insecticide. Its toxicity to aquatic organisms (96-hour LC50, mg/L) is 140 for rainbow trout and 135 for bluegill sunfish. It is harmless to honeybees with an LD50 (oral and dermal) greater than 100 μg/bee. Its toxicity to beneficial organisms (8-day dietary LC50) is greater than 4640 mg/L for northern bobwhite and mallard duck, showing no harm to predatory insects. The acute oral LD50 for rats and mice is greater than 4640 mg/kg. The acute dermal LD50 for rabbits is greater than 2 g/kg, and for rats, it is 10 g/kg. The acute inhalation LC50 for rats is greater than 2.88 mg/L. It has slight irritant effects on rabbit eyes but no irritant effects on the skin. The compound does not accumulate significantly in animal bodies and is rapidly metabolized. Under experimental conditions, it has not shown mutagenic, teratogenic, or carcinogenic effects. In a 2-year feeding study, doses up to 40 mg/L for rats and 50 mg/L for mice showed no effects. The 30-day dietary LC50 for salmon is 0.3 mg/L. Diflubenzuron has low toxicity to bees, with an LD50 (acute contact) greater than 100 μg/bee, and low toxicity to birds, with an acute oral LD50 greater than 4640 mg/L for 8-day dietary exposure. The LC50 for water fleas (48-hour) is 7.1 μg/L.

Diflubenzuron Mode of Action

Diflubenzuron acts as a stomach poison and contact insecticide without systemic activity. It is a benzoylurea class insect growth regulator. Its mode of action involves inhibiting chitin synthesisin pests, which effectively affects various lepidopteran pests. It has no phytotoxicity when used at effective doses and does not have adverse effects on beneficial organisms such as birds, fish, shrimp, frogs, honeybees, ladybugs, ground beetles, spiders, hoverflies, parasitic wasps, and ants. The insecticidal effect of diflubenzuron is relatively slow.

Diflubenzuron Mechanism of Action

Diflubenzuron inhibits chitin synthesis, preventing the formation of a new exoskeleton during insect molting. This leads to malformed insects and eventually their death.

Diflubenzuron Target Pests

Diflubenzuron is highly effective against lepidopteran pests and shows good control against pests of the orders Coleoptera and Diptera. It has no significant adverse effects on beneficial organisms and natural enemies. It is mainly used on crops such as apple, pear, citrus, corn, rice, and cruciferous vegetables. It is effective against pests such as apple leaf roller, beet armyworm, pear psylla, pear sucker, corn borer, wheat aphid, citrus psylla, cabbage worm, and others.

Diflubenzuron Application Methods

Here are some recommended application rates for specific pests:

  • Rust mite: Spray with 60-80 mg/kg during the egg hatching period to early nymph stage.
  • Tea geometrid: Spray with 100-200 mg/kg during the egg hatching period to before the third instar.
  • Citrus leaf miner: Spray with 60-125 mg/kg.
  • Whitefly: Apply 15-30 g/ha of active ingredient in a water-based spray during the third to fourth instar of the first generation, second generation nymph hatching peak, and third generation second to third instar.
  • Corn borer: Apply 100-200 mg/L as a soil drench or spray during the egg hatch or oviposition peak.
  • Rice stem borer: Spray with 25 mg/L before the first to third instar nymph stage.
  • Cabbage worm, beet armyworm: Spray with 150-225 g/ha of active ingredient or 25 mg/L of the formulated product during the early stage of larval development.
  • Pear fruit borer, obliquebanded leafroller: Spray with 100 mg/kg of the formulated product during the egg hatching period.
  • Cotton bollworm: Spray with 3-4 mg/L of the formulated product during the oviposition peak.
  • Citrus psylla: Spray with 100 mg/L of the formulated product during the nymph stage.
  • Pine caterpillar, gypsy moth, fall webworm: Spray with 30-45 g/ha of active ingredient in a water-based spray during the early larval stage. Diflubenzuron also has ovicidal activity against these pests.
  • Mosquito larvae: Apply 25-40 g/ha of active ingredient as a surface spray over water.
  • Bagworm larvae: Apply 0.5-1 g/ha of active ingredient as a surface spray.

Diflubenzuron Precautions

  1. Apply diflubenzuron during the early larval stage or egg stage of the target pests.
  2. Ensure uniform application.
  3. Do not mix with alkaline substances.
  4. Store in a cool, dry place away from food, feed, and other chemicals.

Note: It is important to follow the specific product instructions and consult with local agricultural authorities for proper and safe usage of diflubenzuron-based insecticides.

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