|Protein Bait 401|
What is a protein bait?
Flies need sugars and proteinaceous food to survive and mature. They utilize various sources such as fungus, bird droppings, pollen, etc. Because of their inherent needs, fruit flies are highly attracted to high quality protein and sugar baits. Protein bait lures will capture both males and females of most fruit fly species but may not be as attractive to a given fruit fly species as the male lures.
Are protein bait lures and sprays the same?
Protein bait lures are used primarily for monitoring purposes, while protein bait sprays are intended for fruit fly control.
How does protein baits work?
The baits are detected by fruit flies over short distances (10-20 ft.) Some of the commercial protein baits are combined with other volatile odors that attract the flies from slightly greater distances. Typically, flies attracted to the protein bait source are killed by drowning in the protein slurry or by the action of a toxicant, if one is included.
What are some protein baits currently available?
Nulure is available commercially in Hawaii. It can be used in bait traps or in tank mixes with pesticides labeled for the use. GF-120, a spinosad protein bait became commercially available in June 2002. It can be purchased from larger fertilizer and pesticide dealerships. There are other bait proteins, but they are not available in Hawaii at this time.
How safe is protein bait?
In the past, protein baits were combined with a tank mix of organophosphate pesticides. The organophosphate pesticide and protein bait residues on the plant killed the fly by contact or ingestion. Safety to humans is based on the insecticide that is used. The new commercial product, GF-120, combines the bait and insecticide for ease of use. The toxicant, spinosad, is comparatively very safe to humans. The fruit flies are killed after feeding on the droplets of the product dispersed on plant foliage.
How does GF-120 differ from earlier baits?
Ingredients in GF-120 are optimized for attraction of multiple tephritid species, both male and females. GF-120 is active for at least 10 days after initial application. It can be stored for up to 2 years without degradation. Finally, industrial quality controls ensure consistent performance.
How do I apply the new GF-120 protein bait?
GF-120 is designed for low volume and low toxicity application. The recommended ratio for GF-120 to water is 1:2, or 1:3, not to exceed 1:4 ratio. As always, read the label affixed to the container prior to application. Follow safety precautions statements and applicable use directions.
Where do I spray the bait?
Protein bait works best when applied to the underside of leaves .
When do I apply the protein bait, and how often?
Protein bait works best when applied on a 7-14 day interval. Growers who plant crops periodically may apply protein bait before the flowering stage to suppress the fruit fly populations before fruiting. For year round gardeners / those who maintain continuous hosts throughout the year, apply protein bait at 7-14 day intervals on approved crops year round.
Do I need a pesticide license to buy a protein bait?
Neither of the protein baits currently available in Hawaii are labeled as restricted-use chemicals. Of course, the use of a pesticide with any protein bait is subject to the regulations governing the pesticide; in most cases they would require a pesticide applicator's license. GF-120 was labeled for general use in Hawaii in June 2002.
Information extracted from Dow Agrociences Technical Fact Sheet and GF-120 supplemental label.