What are Japanese Beetles?
Japanese beetle (JB) are insect pests that feed on a variety of turf, trees, vines, and ornamental plants. "Adults are oval, metallic green with bronze-colored wings, and are about 1/2" long. Males are slightly smaller than females. Adults have six white tufts of hair along each side of the body. Grubs are creamy white, C-Shaped, and 1" long when fully grown. Adults are found clustered together on plants and grubs can be clumped under the soil of turfgrass." (Resource: Utah Pest Fact Sheet)
In their larval stage (grubs), JB eat grass roots. As adults JB feed on foliage or fruits of 300 different plant species. Plants especially preferred by JB include American elm, rose bushes, and raspberry bushes. When feeding, the adults release a special pheromone or scent that attracts other adults. Those beetle clusters can completely consume a fruit or vegetable on which they are feeding.
At present, JB occurs throughout most of the Eastern United States. Many states west of the Mississippi River, including Oregon, are uninfested. Because of potential damage to Oregon’s agricultural products and residential plants (like lawn and roses), the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) conducts surveys with baited traps each year to detect JB infestations.
When a JB infestation is found in Oregon, ODA treats that area with an insecticide, like Acelepryn G, to kill the JB grubs as soon as they begin feeding on plant roots in the area.
What is Acelepryn G®?
Acelepryn G® (EPA Registration No. 100-1500) is a pesticide product that contains 0.2% chlorantraniliprole as its active ingredient.
Chlorantraniliprole is classified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a “Reduced Risk” pesticide. This means that chlorantraniliprole poses a lower risk to human health and the environment than other pesticides allowed for the same uses.
The harm that a pesticide can cause humans and animals is known as toxicity. EPA has determined that Acelepryn G® falls into a low toxicity category by all routes of exposure. Eating, breathing, skin and eye contact are considered exposure routes. This means that, unlike with many other pesticides, EPA does not require Acelepryn G® to have a signal word (DANGER, WARNING, or CAUTION) on its package.
What is chlorantraniliprole?
Chlorantraniliprole is the main or active ingredient in the pesticide Acelepryn G®.
It belongs to the anthranilic diamide group of insecticides. When eaten by insects, chlorantraniliprole interrupts the normal activity of their muscles, resulting in death.
What about the ‘other’ or so-called inert ingredients in Acelepryn G®?
While chlorantraniliprole, the active ingredient in Acelepryn G®, is just 0.2% of the product, there are often concerns about other ingredients in the remaining 99.8%. While manufacturers are not required to list these on the label, EPA does regulate them.
Read more at: http://npic.orst.edu/ingred/inert.html.
When evaluating Acelepryn G®, EPA looked at the whole product, including the other ingredients. EPA determined that all of Acelepryn G® was of very low toxicity, and did not need a signal word (DANGER, WARNING, or CAUTION). This means that the whole product falls into the EPA’s lowest toxicity category by all routes of exposure (oral, dermal, inhalation, and other effects like eye and skin irritation).
When will chlorantraniliprole be applied in my neighborhood? How will it be done?
In April and May 2017, pesticide applicators worked with ODA to apply the insecticide Acelepryn G® to eradicate an infestation of JB. ODA is proposing to treat for JB again in 2018 and subsequent years as necessary.
Acelepryn G® will be applied with hand-held spreaders. These are often used by homeowners to spread seed or dry fertilizer in their yards.
The proposed treatment area for 2018 will include parts of Cedar Mill and Bethany in Washington County. Visit http://www.japanesebeetlepdx.info/treatment.html for application details. Acelepryn G® comes in a dry, granular form. It looks like light, brown granules that are 1/16” to 1/8” (1-2mm) in size. Once ODA has spread Acelepryn G® in affected areas, ODA will request that granules be watered into the ground by residents right after the application.
What should I do before, during and after the application of Acelepryn G® to my property?
As a precaution, you can take the following steps:
- Stay indoors (and keep pets indoors) during application to your property. Immediately after the granules have been spread, residents are to spray them with water, as directed by ODA. This allows the granules to break down and become absorbed into the turf or soil.
- Keep children and pets off the treated area as long as granules are still visible. Inspect walkways and patios, and sweep-up or pick up stray granules (after putting on gloves). Granules are supposed to be watered in, as instructed by ODA. Keep off of the treated area until the granules are completely watered in and the lawn has dried.
- Wash exposed skin with soap and water if direct contact with the granules occurs.
- If you feel sick or have symptoms following exposure, contact your healthcare provider or the Oregon Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222 for further medical advice.
Learn about additional ways to avoid exposure: http://npic.orst.edu/factsheets/MinimizingExposure.html.
How might I be exposed to chlorantraniliprole?
Direct exposure (inhaling, swallowing, or experiencing contact on the skin or eyes) to chlorantraniliprole is unlikely.
The application procedure from EPA requires that Acelepryn G® granules be watered into the ground immediately after they are applied. Water causes the granules break down and become absorbed by the surrounding soil.
No spray mist will occur with the application of Acelepryn G®.
As a precaution, you can take the steps listed below, particularly for children and pets.
Can chlorantraniliprole make people sick?
It is unlikely that even direct exposure to chlorantraniliprole, when used according to directions on the Acelepryn G®’s label, will result in adverse health effects to humans or animals.
In 2014, EPA determined with reasonable certainty that no harm will result to the general population, or to infants and children from exposure to chlorantraniliprole residues. EPA reaffirmed this in September 2016. EPA determined that no harm is expected from exposure to chlorantraniliprole from skin contact or by incidental ingestion by children/toddlers over the short and intermediate-term. In fact, to exceed EPA’s maximum acceptable daily dose for chlorantraniliprole, a toddler would need to eat more than 4 pounds of treated soil daily.
EPA has determined that chlorantraniliprole is neither genotoxic (damaging to genetic material like DNA); neurotoxic (damaging to the nervous system); nor immunotoxic (damaging to the immune system). EPA has determined it is neither carcinogenic (i.e. doesn’t cause cancer) nor teratogenic (i.e. doesn’t cause birth defects). EPA determined it does not cause skin irritation nor is it a skin sensitizer. No known reports of hypersensitivity (allergy) to chlorantraniliprole have been made to EPA.
To understand its effects on mammals (including people), toxicity studies of chlorantraniliprole were done on mice. At very high daily doses over 1.5 years, some changes in liver cells and increase liver weights were observed in some male (but not female) mice. Moderate doses below this level were also tested. These liver changes were not observed at lower doses. The amount of chlorantraniliprole that people could be exposed to from the applications of Acelepryn G® to eradicate JB is far lower than the amount that caused these effects in mice.
As of December 1, 2016, OHA’s Pesticide Exposure Safety & Tracking Program has never received a case of pesticide poisoning involving chlorantraniliprole.
Can the treatment affect the safety of food grown/raised on my property?
Chlorantraniliprole, the active ingredient in Acelepryn G®, is categorized by EPA as a “reduced risk” pesticide when used on turf as it has low impact on human health and on the health of non-target organisms (e.g., birds, fish, plants).
EPA has allowed chlorantraniliprole to be registered for use on food crops such as peaches, plumes and artichokes. Based on EPA's assessment of these food uses, the risk to the general population from consumption of home garden fruits and vegetables near Acelepryn G® applications is expected to be hundreds to thousands of times below a level of concern.
When Acelepryn G® is applied only to turf, ground-cover, and ornamental plants, it is unlikely that chlorantraniliprole would be found on fruits and vegetables. However, water flowing over the ground soon after application can move some of the pesticide to unexpected areas, such as a garden. Once there, chlorantraniliprole can be taken up by plants. The National Pesticide Information Center has guidance on minimizing pesticide residues in food.
Can I plant a garden next year in areas that were treated this year?
As a precaution, avoid planting vegetables or herbs directly into the treated soil for one year.
This is due to the possibility that residue could be taken up into plants since it lasts in the soil for many months. However, the risk to the general population from consumption of home garden fruits and vegetables grown in soil one year following Acelepryn G® application is expected to be hundreds to thousands of times below a level of concern. The National Pesticide Information Center has guidance on minimizing pesticide residues in food.
Can chlorantraniliprole get into my drinking water?
Most if not all residents in the treatment area get their drinking water from the City of Portland water system. The Acelepryn G® application will not penetrate the pipes bringing drinking water directly from the City of Portland into your home.
The use of this chemical in areas where soils allow water to move easily, particularly where the water table is shallow, may result in ground-water contamination. If you have a domestic drinking water well, contamination of your drinking water would depend on the depth of the well, the aquifer it draws from, and characteristics of the soils around the well. Any amount of chlorantraniliprole reaching ground water through time is likely to be well below the level that could cause harm.
What if I have more questions?
If you have been exposed to Acelepryn G® and you have concerns about possible health effects, wash the affected area with soap and water and contact the Oregon Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222.
For non-urgent questions on Acelepryn G® or chlorantraniliprole, contact the EPA-funded National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC), based at Oregon State University, by phone 1-800-858-7378 (M-F, 8AM-12PM).
You can learn more about pesticides on NPIC’s website http://npic.orst.edu.
For general information about applications of Acelepryn G®, planned for mid-April to May 2017, please contact Oregon Department of Agriculture’s (ODA) Plant Protection and Conservation Programs staff at 1-800-525-0137 (Mon. – Fri., 8AM – 5PM) or by email: email@example.com.
For more information on JB, visit: http://www.japanesebeetlepdx.info.
To learn more about the Oregon Department of Agriculture’s invasive species program visit: http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/programs/IPPM/SuppressionEradication/Pages/SuppressionEradication.aspx.