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Impact of an Insecticide Resistance Strategy for House Fly (Diptera: Muscidae) Control in Intensive Animal Units in the United Kingdom

Jane Learmount, Paul Chapman, Alan MacNicoll
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/0022-0493-95.6.1245 1245-1250 First published online: 1 December 2002


A strategy for house fly (Musca domestica L.) control in intensive animal units in the United Kingdom was proposed by the Pesticide Safety Directorate (PSD) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in 1993. An advice leaflet was circulated to farmers, and label recommendations for insecticides used to control house flies were altered to prevent their long-term and frequent use. A study was carried out between 1996 and 1998 to gather data on insecticide use and resistance in house fly populations and compared with results from a study carried out in 1990–1992 to assess the impact of the 1993 label recommendations. As in the 1990–1992 study, resistance to methomyl, azamethiphos and pyrethrins + piperonyl butoxide was assessed. Larvicide tests with cyromazine, which had recently been released in the United Kingdom, were also included in this study. Most of the farmers claimed to have received and read the PSD insecticide advice leaflet, and half claimed to have altered insecticide treatments as a result. Comparing results for insecticides used before and after 1993, the proportion of farmers claiming to have used each of the insecticides had decreased. However, there had been no amelioration in resistance to synergised pyrethrins, and the number of house fly populations with reduced response to the insecticide baits had increased between 1990–1992 and 1996–1998. All the house fly populations tested were fully susceptible to cyromazine. There is an urgent need, therefore, to devise new strategies and particularly to minimize the risk of selecting for resistance to cyromazine.

  • Musca domestica
  • control strategies
  • resistance
  • insecticides
  • baits

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