When Beauveria spores come into contact with the insect, they attach to and penetrate through the ‘skin’ or cuticle. This is achieved by the physical growth of the fungal mycelium aided by enzymes such as chitinase and proteases. Once inside the insect, the fungus grows and multiplies. Death is caused by internal tissue destruction and may be aided by toxins produced by the fungus.
Eco-Bb (Bb-Protec) is suitable for field and tunnel use, providing oil coated, UV protected spores effective against various stages of the pest life cycle. The formulation prevents the fungal spores from drying out and becoming deactivated under field conditions that are less than favourable. It also enhances penetration and infection of the insect or mite pest. The particular strain of B. bassiana utilized in this product was isolated from soil in Clanwilliam in South Africa and so is adapted to hot, dry conditions.