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Chile increases use of Puffer aerosol system for application of semiochemicalsqrcode

Apr. 19, 2023

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Apr. 19, 2023

Suterra Corporate
United States  United States

The use of Puffer aerosol systems for the application of semiochemicals, such as pheromones, which sexually confuse insect pests, has been growing at a rapid pace in Chile.


The use of semiochemicals has witnessed significantly technological development in terms of diffusion, making the pheromone is more efficient, allowing its impact to be better measured, and making it easier to remove it after the end of the season.

One of the most worrying targets in Chile is Lobesia botrana or grapevine moth pest, which is susceptible to pheromone-based strategies.

Although much of this strategy has been carried out with passive diffusers, there has recently been a tendency to use aerosol systems, such as the Puffer, which allows for better control of pheromone applications.

The technology, although developed 25 years ago by the American company, Suterra, under the CheckMate Puffer brand, was only recently commercialized for major pests in Latin America.

It is a small technological device programmed to release pheromones regularly, depending on the pest of interest.

These aerosols also do not leave residues on crops, therefore, they do not cause problems when fruits are exported.

The Puffer consists of an aerosol that is inserted in a cabinet with batteries, which is highly resistant to extreme temperatures, dust, water and dirt. Its installation is carried out at the level of the crop canopy in the middle of winter.

Unlike other passive pheromone dispensers, whose diffusion intensifies at higher temperatures, the Puffer is not affected by heat or cold, releasing doses of pheromones only during the programmed period, therefore, avoiding product waste and ensuring that the device will have enough pheromones to cover the pest cycle.

Paulo Rivara.jpeg″The emission rates of these devices are very high during these months, and we have seen that this wears them down and they are not able to cover the entire phenological period of the pest,″ said Paulo Rivara (Sales Operations Manager at Suterra in Chile).

As Lobesia botrana is a pest that breeds for three generations per season, the third generation does not receive almost any pheromones or very little, which is harmful for the next season.

Another factor in favor of aerosols is that they last more than 200 days, compared with 120 to 180 days for other alternatives on the market.

But they make the biggest difference as they only require an average of 2.5 devices per hectare for effective pest control, whereas regular dispensers can require more than 500 per hectare, making management much simpler.

″When you look at this technology per unit, it is more valuable than other devices. However, when calculating the value of the devices per hectare and day of application, the cost is reduced and it becomes a very economical alternative,″ Rivara said.

To make the process as efficient as possible, aerosols have a mapping service software, in which the data provided by the customer is entered and from which a personalized recommendation is generated.

Among the aspects the system captures are property coordinates, lot surface and shape, prevailing wind details, adjacent lots, and pest pressure history.

(Editing by Leonardo Gottems, reporter for AgroPages)

Source: AgroNews


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