Anti-BYDV treatment set to cut autumn workload
By Edward Long
BYDV control is set to be easier this autumn with the arrival of a new insecticidal seed treatment for use in cereals.
Raxil Secur from Bayer contains imidacloprid, the insecticide used for sugar beet seed dressing Gaucho. It is claimed to provide effective control of the aphids from sowing through until December.
In trials on Gaelic and Puffin winter barley last year, BYDV control from Raxil Secur matched two well-timed pyrethroid sprays.
Where there was no more than 5% BYDV infection in an untreated crop, the yield response to the new Bayer product averaged 0.35t/ha (0.14t/acre). Where BYDV infection in untreated plots was 15-26%, there was a gain of 0.79t/ha (0.32t/acre), and with 40-60% virus the extra yield amounted to 1.09t/ha (0.44t/acre).
"Raxil Secur offers better targeted pest control, which avoids the need for blanket spraying," says Bayers Alan Wainwright. "It also eases management pressures and autumn workload, as there is no need to juggle the timings of a herbicide/insecticide mix, which can be a problem in a wet time. By providing protection from drilling onwards it allows early drilling, even in high BYDV risk areas, without suffering a yield penalty."
The UK is the third country in Europe to have imidacloprid approved for use in barley. In France commercial use was first permitted in 1991, and last year it was available to German growers.
The price of Raxil Secur will be equivalent to the cost of buying and applying two cypermethrin sprays, says Bayer. Stocks will allow about 3% of the national winter barley crop to be treated this autumn.
lBayer is developing a similar seed treatment for wheat.
BYDV God-send? Raxil Secur insecticide seed treatment proves its worth on this high pressure site in Suffolk. The light green winter barley (centre) shows the effect well, with (from left) treated and untreated plots side by side of Gaelic, Gleam, Fanfare and Regina.
John Young of ADAS:Saves hassle of critical spray timings.
Keith Norman of Velcourt:Protects the environment.
Alan Wainwright of Bayer:Protects crops from sowing to December.