In September 2023, the EPA approved new restrictions for some insecticides that contain the active ingredient cyantraniliprole. Some trade names that contain cyantraniliprole include Exirel, Minecto Pro, and Mainspring GNL. The new restrictions are meant to help protect non-target species, critical habitats, and endangered species. The EPA first registered products with cyantraniliprole in 2014. Following that registration, a group sued the EPA alleging the agency had not met its requirement to protect endangered species. A court agreed and the EPA, along with the manufacturers, drew up new restrictions for use of the products.
Cyantraniliprole can be used as a foliar spray or soil application to control pest insects on a variety of agricultural crops and as a seed treatment on some agricultural crops. It is also registered for non-agricultural uses, including on turf and ornamental plants.
When the new labels come out (which might not be until the middle of 2024), they will include new restrictions on the label as well as require users to go to the EPA Bulletins Live Two! Website to find other restrictions based on where the products will be used. If the product will be used in an area where endangered species or critical habitat could be harmed, then additional restrictions could apply.
Among other requirements, the revised labels require pesticide applicators to take several measures when using cyantraniliprole, including:
- Using spray nozzles that produce medium to coarser droplets to reduce drift.
- Require an application buffer of 25 feet for ground applications (50 feet for aerial applications) from water bodies.
- Require a 25-foot buffer around a crop when using an “airblast” sprayer.
- Require the use of swath displacement to certain areas of a field where spray drift is likely to occur during aerial applications, and
- Require additional aerial buffers to protect 18 listed species and two critical habitats listed on EPA’s Bulletins Live Two! (BLT) Website.
Some additional restrictions specific for aerial applications include:
For aerial applications using medium to coarse droplet sizes:
A 75 foot in-field, wind-directional buffer for wind speeds =<10 mph or a 100 foot in-field, wind-directional buffer for wind speeds 11-15 mph.
For aerial applications using coarse to very coarse droplet sizes:
A 40 foot in-field, wind-directional buffer for wind speeds =<10 mph or a 50 foot in-field, wind-directional buffer for wind speeds 11-15 mph.
It’s worth noting that the requirement for applicators to go to the EPA BLT website is something that will likely be appearing on more labels in the future.