Toxic effect of commercial formulations of neem oil, Azadirachta indica A. Juss., in pupae and adults of the sugarcane borer, Diatraea saccharalis F. (Lepidoptera: Crambidae)
ABSTRACT: To evaluate the toxic effect of commercial formulations of neem oil, Azadirachta indica A. Juss, pre-pupae (PP), young pupae (YP) and old pupae (OP) of Diatraea saccharalis F. (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) were sprayed with the diluted extract in distilled water at concentrations of 0.0, 0.3, 0.5, 1.0 and 2.0%. The neem extract caused concentration-dependent effects on mortality of pupae, and the pupae that failed to emerge in adults had multiple abnormalities. The longevity of pupae that emerged in adults (YP and OP group) did not differ from the control group. The abnormalities found in adults were related to mortality in all treatments, except at the concentration of 1.0%. Fertility was assessed according to the oviposition of adult females from the YP group that showed no abnormalities, through the evaluation of the number of deposited eggs and the rate of undeveloped eggs. The results showed a reduction in the number of eggs laid and an increase in the percentage of undeveloped eggs. These results show that neem oil has a high potential to control the toughest stage of the sugarcane borer and also reduces the further development. Therefore, commercial formulations of neem oil have a toxic effect on pupae and adults of D. saccharalis.