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What is Spidex?
Spidex is the trade name used by Zonda Beneficials for the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis.
It is used to control two-spotted mites. Spidex will hunt, kill and eat two-spotted mites (Tetranychus urticae). They are very effective predators, and will only feed on spider mites, once their food source runs out, they disperse and/or die off. They do not feed on any type of plant material.
How does Spidex work?
Spidex is very mobile – a good attribute when you are a predator. Spidex hunt and kill both juvenile and adult spider mites, and adult Spidex will also eat spider mite eggs as well.
The female predatory mite eats all stages of the two-spotted mites.The larva does not eat, but the nymphs eat eggs, larvae and protonymphs of the two-spotted mite.The amount that is eaten depends on the number of prey mites and predators, the temperature and the relative humidity.When the temperature rises, the number of two-spotted mites eaten also increases.SPIDEX however does not like temperatures over 30 degrees C.At 35 degrees C, the predatory mite even stops eating.The optimum temperature for SPIDEX is between 15 and 25 degrees C.At 20 degrees C, an adult predatory mite can eat five adult two-spotted mites or up to twenty young larvae and eggs per day.
How is Spidex supplied?
Spidex is supplied on leaves, in punnets. This option provides you with Spidex at all stages. Leaves will also have a small amount of 2spot as a food source for the Spidex while in transit.
We have two options available:
-Spidex leaves 1000 (minimum of 1000 adults)
-Spidex leaves 500 (minimum of 10,000 adults)
This option is ideal for Hot Spots
Spidex should be introduced at the first signs of spider mites in a crop. Although, even when introduced late into an infected crop, Spidex may still be able to gain control over spider mite.
If mite numbers are low when the predators are introduced, complete control should be achieved within 3-4 weeks.If, however numbers of two-spotted mites are high at the time of introduction, then the predators may take up to 10 weeks to gain full control.
Growers should actively monitor their plants. Successful biological control relies on the grower being aware of what is happening in his/her crop at times.
Low infestation or first introduction – 4 mites/ per square meter (1x 100ml bottles per 250sqm)
Hot Spots or high infestation – 20 mites /per square meter (5x 100ml bottles per 250sqm)
Storage and Handling
Once received Spidex can be stored for up to 2 days in a cool, dark place at between 8-10c.
Biological beneficials should be introduced into the crop as soon as possible after receipt.
The ideal environmental conditions for Spidex are:
-relative humidity greater than 75%
-temperatures above 20c for some hours of the day. Optimal temperatures for controlling spider mite is between 15-25c.
Spidex is sensitive to temperatures about 30c, and at 35c will stop feeding altogether. Therefore, Spidex do not generally perform well under very dry and hot conditions.
Before introducing Spidex to any crop it is very important to consider what insecticides or fungicides have been used in the crop within the last two months. Many chemical sprays can have a long lasting residual effect on biological control agents. There is a limited number of chemicals that can be used in a crop when using beneficial mites. Please check the compatibility of certain chemicals before introducing any beneficial. Please refer to the Koppert Side Effects Guide – www.koppert.com/side-effects/.
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