Semios, provider of real-time agricultural information and precision pest management tools, has been given EPA approval for three aerosol pheromone products that disrupt the mating of codling moth and oriental fruit moth.
“Our new formula performs extremely well at lower temperatures, emitting a drier mist that disperses quickly across an orchard,” said Michael Gilbert, CEO of Semios.
The pheromone aerosol dispenser is part of a custom designed controller and sensor network that gives farmers remote access to the conditions in the field 24/7.
Once hung in the trees, the Semios in-field sensors monitor the number of pests and combine this with wind and temperature conditions to optimize pheromone deployment. Most common is a metered puff every 15 minutes, 12 hours a day, during evening and nighttime hours through the growing season.
The combination of remote access to the fields 24/7 and the aerosol trigger release means farmers can deploy the right amount of pheromones only when needed, making it more effective and a less costly alternative to pesticides. Semios is the only pheromone dispenser that can be controlled remotely.
“We deployed Semios pheromones on 35 acres this past season and did not need to use any pesticides on this crop, however a separate control block that we established needed multiple sprays, said Manus Boonzaier, farm manager for Canada’s largest grower and packer of apples, said. “It was clear the pheromones were highly effective in disrupting the codling moth.”
Pheromones confuse the male insect so it is unable to find the female to fertilize the eggs, thus diminishing pest populations without killing the pests or using toxic substances. Codling moth is the number one global pest of apples and pears, and the oriental fruit moth is the second.
By switching from pesticides to pheromones, farmers worldwide can produce a safer product with less toxicity to the fruit, workers and environment. As the pheromone only targets the specific pest, pollinators and other beneficial insect species are not affected. Semios also offers organic-eligible pheromones.