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The time may be right to control redlegged earth mite problem paddocks – check first with Timerite

The Timerite® date is approaching for many localities and should be enacted if redlegged earth mite populations warrant it

About Timerite®

Redlegged earth mites (Halotydeus destructor - RLEM) were prevalent in many regions earlier in the year. Early-mid spring is the ideal time to consider potential issues for 2017. Excellent control of RLEM can be achieved if they are sprayed during a short window in spring when female mites have ceased laying winter eggs (eggs that must hatch this season) and before they start laying diapause eggs (over-summering eggs that survive until next season). This approach, known as Timerite®, can significantly reduce RLEM numbers the following autumn.

The optimum spring-spray dates for RLEM in eastern Australia are mostly between mid-September and mid-October. Location-specific dates are freely available from the Timerite® website.

Some examples of the recommended dates are:

Horsham - 23rd Sept

Bendigo - 28th Sept

Wagga Wagga - 29th Sept

Dubbo - 14th Oct

Colac - 16th Oct

The date is based on geographical location and is therefore unique to each property. It is recommended that spraying be carried out within the two-week period before the optimal date.

Correct identification of mites before deciding to spray is important. The Timerite® strategy is designed to only control RLEM; it will not effectively control other pests, such as blue oat mites and lucerne flea (and it can exacerbate lucerne flea issues). Before using this approach, consideration should also be given to the number of mites present and the susceptibility of the crop to be sown next season. Insecticides need to be used judiciously to avoid resistance issues, which have already emerged in RLEM in Western Australia.

Free RLEM resistance testing

Take advantage of a testing service to screen for resistance in mites, available to all growers and advisors thanks to GRDC. For more information see PestFacts Issue No. 7 or contact:

Dr James Maino


Ph: 03 9349 4723


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