Now, in the gardens of Amur residents, in potato plantings, it is possible with the naked eye to detect a polyphagous pest - a 28-point ladybug or an epilyakhna. Potato ladybugs mainly feed on potato tops, but they gladly feast on the leaves of pepper, tomato, eggplant, cucumber, pumpkin, other melons, corn, soybeans.
Epilyakhna is not one of the insects that arrived from outside the Amur Region. “She is a native of the Far East, and lived here long before man appeared. Just the expansion of planting for potatoes, especially in the household sector, where there is no organized fight against it, naturally caused an increase in the population, ”says Pavel Zhirnov, head of the Blagoveshchensk department of the branch of the Federal State Budgetary Institution Rosselkhoztsentr in the Amur Region.
A potato ladybird in the Amur region gives one generation per summer. Having overwintered under the forest litter on forest edges, under heaps of plant residues in the fields and in the upper layer of soil, the beetles go out to feed in mid-May - early June. The winter hardiness of the epilyakhna is very high, its beetles do not die at temperatures down to -45C °, the mass death of the ladybird is noted only in winters with little snow and very frosty. In the Amur region, it hurts even in the Tyndinsky region, known for its harsh climate.
To the view that it hibernates mainly under the forest litter, the ladybird causes the main damage to potatoes in a wooded area. In the steppe regions of the region, it is small, although in recent years there has been a tendency to increase its number. The beetles of the 28-point ladybird eat up the leaf plate when feeding, without touching the veins, in other words, they skeletonize the leaves. Such damaged leaves quickly turn yellow and fall off. In addition to destroying leaves, epilyakhnas spread dangerous viral infections, and as a result, the potato yield decreases by 10-100%, the starch content in the tubers decreases.
“After a good meal of young potato leaves, the female potato lady, starting from June to mid-August, begin to lay eggs,” says Pavel Zhirnov. - The fertility of the ladybird is very high - some female heroines bring up to 2 thousand eggs. The eggs hatch light yellow larvae, round, up to 6 mm long, with rows of black spines - needles, which, however, are not able to prick anyone, since they are very soft. Their entire life span is about one month, the larvae, imitating their parents, intensively eat the leaves, also skeletonizing them. Thus, beetles and larvae are both harmful in the 28-point ladybird. Then the larvae pupate and turn into young beetles. Young beetles, before going to winter quarters, feed intensively, and such fattening of winter fat occurs from mid-August to the first cold weather - mid-September. " Specialists of the plant protection department of the branch of the Federal State Budgetary Institution "Rosselkhoztsentr" warn that the main method of fighting the 28-point ladybird is chemical, which allows planting potatoes to get rid of the pest for at least 2 weeks after spraying. In order for the grown potatoes to be safe for health, chemical treatments are carried out at least 30 days before harvest. This is the so-called waiting period.
In most instructions for the use of the drug, this period is set at 10-25 days. In the Amur Region, the summer is much colder than in European Russia, where the marketed drugs were tested, so the drugs decompose more slowly and the period of their complete decay in plants is increased. After waiting 30 days, the processed fruit will be safe. It is necessary to strictly observe the dosage of the drug, according to the attached instructions, in no case to overestimate the recommended application rate, but not to underestimate it. Only when using the recommended dosage, the residual amounts of the drug in the product will not harm. Do not use expired, expired and uncertified drugs. If you plan more than one treatment per season, then use different drugs with a different active ingredient. This will help avoid the emergence of drug-resistant insect pests. To exclude the accumulation of harmful substances, in the Amur region it is recommended to carry out no more than 2 chemical treatments of vegetable and fruit crops per season. In order to avoid the death of bees, it is impossible to carry out chemical treatment of crops during flowering, it is possible only before or after. It is generally better to cut flowers on potato bushes, let the nutrients go to the formation of tubers, and not to useless flowering. It is better to carry out processing immediately with neighboring areas, then the death of pests will be maximum. It is safe to prepare a preparation for processing plants in a regular gas mask or RPG respirator. Cotton-gauze, cloth dressings are not able to protect your respiratory organs from chemistry. Wear clothing that completely covers your body. The used container, the remaining solution must be disposed of strictly according to the instructions attached to the preparation.
The specialists of Rosselkhoztsentr recommend the following drugs: Commander, VRK (the main component of the drug that directly kills insects is imidacloprid), Iskra - Zolotaya, P Tanrek, VRK, Corado, VRK (active ingredient - imidacloprid), Aktara, VDG (active ingredient - thiamethoxam). Protect for 2-3 weeks such drugs as Qi-Alpha, EC (active substance - alpha-cypermethrin), Kinmix, EC (active substance - beta-cypermethrin), Lightning, EC (active substance - lambda-cyhalothrin). Further, the drug in the plant disintegrates so much that it becomes harmless to insects. Biological preparations for fighting the cow are also recommended: Fitoverm, EC (active substance - aversectin C), Iskra - Bio (active substance - avertin N), Bitoxibacillin, P. These preparations kill insects with the waste products of microorganisms, therefore they are harmless to humans. The waiting period for them is only 2 days. During the season, biological products can also be used for no more than two treatments. Their main disadvantage is easy removal from leaves, treated with plants by rain or abundant dew, as well as less efficiency in killing the ladybug in comparison with chemical preparations. Therefore, the treatment of plants with biological products is carried out in dry, clear and calm weather, when precipitation is unlikely within 8-10 hours after treatment.