A metaldehyde-based slug bait shaped like a lentil is reportedly at least 20% more efficient at killing slugs than wet processed pellets containing a higher amount of active ingredient.

Independent UK trials by i2L have shown “Slug-Lentils” to be much more rapidly found and ingested by our two common slug species, particularly the juveniles, which are most difficult to target. The product also shows greater resilience in the field, meaning one application may be sufficient to control the pest, suggests Barclay Crop Protection‘s UK business manager, Eric Gussin.

“The unique shape and formulation of the bait quickly delivers the active ingredient in a form accessible to all sizes of slugs, and maintains its integrity for at least two weeks, even during wet periods. When slug numbers are high this is paramount to preventing seedling loss, all the more pertinent now that growers are using low seed rates and paying more for specialist seed.”

Barclay has exclusive UK marketing rights for Slug-Lentils, formulated by long-established bait producer, Frunol-Delicia of East Germany. The official UK launch will take place at Cereals 2008 next month. The price will probably compete with two treatments of dry processed pellets, suggests Mr Gussin.

The product has a 30% market share in the German arable sector after three years, and 20% in France after two seasons of use. Its high take-up reflects the desire to reduce both the economic and environmental cost of slug control, he says.

“The ability to halve previous metaldehyde usage rates while spending less on application and storage has been instrumental in growers’ commitment to the product.”

Product profile

  • 3mm lentils produced by wet extrusion
  • Contains 3% metaldehyde
  • 3kg/ha application rate
  • 30-33 baiting points/sq m
  • Rain and mould resistant for up to 14 days

Case study

Matthias Bernt, of Glesien in Saxony, has used Slug-Lentils exclusively for three seasons on two units totalling 4800ha because of the results it has delivered.
“Efficacy is by far the most important consideration for us. We previously had poor success with minis and methiocarb pellets because they often disintegrated after just 3mm of rain.
“We find with lentils that we make on average one application less to oilseed and cereal crops because they stay around for longer and are more active once slugs find them.”