The toxicities of the herbicide glufosinate-ammonium to three predatory insect and two predatory mite species of Tetranychus urticae Koch were determined in the laboratory by the direct contact application. At a concentration of 540 ppm (a field application rate for weed control in apple orchards), glufosinate-ammonium was almost nontoxic to eggs of Amblyseius womersleyi Schicha, Phytoseiulus persimilis Athias-Henriot, and T. urticae but highly toxic to nymphs and adults of these three mite species, indicating that a common mode of action between predatory and phytophagous mites might be involved. In tests with predatory insects using 540 ppm, glufosinate-ammonium revealed little or no harm to larvae and pupae of Chrysopa pallens Rambur but was slightly harmful to eggs (71.2% mortality), nymphs (65.0% mortality), and adults (57.7% mortality) of Orius strigicollis Poppius. The herbicide showed no direct effect on eggs and adults of Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) but was harmful, slightly harmful, and harmless to first instars (100% mortality), fourth instars (51.1% mortality), and pupae (24.5% mortality), respectively. The larvae and nymphs of predators died within 12 h after treatment, suggesting that the larvicidal and nymphicidal action may be attributable to a direct effect rather than an inhibitory action of chitin synthesis. On the basis of our data, glufosinate-ammonium caused smaller effects on test predators than on T. urticae with the exception of P. persimilis, although the mechanism or cause of selectivity remains unknown. Glufosinate-ammonium merits further study as a key component of integrated pest management.
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Vol. 94 • No. 1