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The Spray Pattern of Entomopathogenic Nematodes

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  2010 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 20 - June 23, 2010  1009541.(doi:10.13031/2013.29929)
Authors:   Eva Brusselman, Bert Beck, Femke Temmerman, Sabien Pollet, Walter Steurbaut, Maurice Moens, David Nuyttens
Keywords:   Entomopathogenic nematodes, spray liquid distribution, foliar application, nozzle type, spray pattern, droplet size distribution

Application technology for biological insecticides like entomopathogenic nematodes (EPN) has been a relatively neglected area. One of the major considerations involved with the selection and use of an application system should be the application distribution pattern. While completely uniform distribution of the nematodes is not entirely essential to their success in soil applications, because there the nematodes can move short distances on their own, a uniform distribution is more important in foliar EPN applications. The present study examined the volumetric distribution pattern of Steinernema feltiae beneath a single standard flat fan, air induction, deflector and twinjet spray nozzle. A comparison with the distribution of a chemical tracer was made to reveal possible distribution problems. Droplet size spectra of the nozzles were measured and linked with the distribution results. A theoretical calculation of the coefficient of variation of the nematode distribution beneath a spray boom was performed. Finally, the actual spray pattern of the EPN on a horizontal surface beneath a spray boom was studied. We can conclude that the volumetric distribution pattern of EPN is influenced by nozzle type and is different from the volumetric distribution pattern of a chemical compound. By the spray overlap using a spray boom, differences in nematode distribution are however decreased to an acceptable level. Nozzle type significantly influences the number of nematodes deposited on a horizontal Petri dish and their distribution within the droplets. Future experiments are needed to reveal if the measured differences in coverage due to nozzle type will result in significant differences in pest control.

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