Sublethal exposure to pyriproxyfen does not impair the abilities of the backswimmer Buenoa amnigenus to prey upon Aedes aegypti larvae.
Pyriproxyfen is a juvenile hormone analogue that is commonly used to control the immature stages of mosquitoes in both artificial and natural water reservoirs. Recently, concerns have been raised regarding the community effectiveness of pyriproxyfen in preventing vector-transmitted diseases. Such concerns have been based on the unintended effects on non-target organisms and the selection of resistant mosquito populations. This investigation was, therefore, conducted to evaluate the toxicity of pyriproxyfen to Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae) larvae and the backswimmer Buenoa amnigenus (Hemiptera: Notonectidae), a naturally occurring mosquito larvae predator. We also assessed the abilities of backswimmers exposed to sublethal levels of pyriproxyfen to prey upon mosquito larvae (L2) under three larval densities (3, 6, or 9 larvae/100 mL of water) using artificial containers. Our results revealed that pyriproxyfen killed backswimmers only at concentrations higher than 100 μg active ingredient [a.i.]/L, which is 10 times higher than that recommended for larvicidal field application (i.e, 10 μg a.i./L). The abilities of backswimmers exposed to sublethal levels of pyriproxyfen (100 μg a.i./L) to prey upon mosquito larvae were not affected. Harmful effects on the backswimmer predatory abilities were detected only at concentrations of 150 μg a.i./L and when there was a higher prey availability (i.e., 9 larvae/100 mL of water). Together, our findings indicate that the reduced community effectiveness of this insecticide derives from factors other than its detrimental effects on non-target organisms such as backswimmers.
Valbon, W; Araújo, SHC; Nery, RS; Barbosa, JF; Newland, PL; Oliveira, EE
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