|1.||Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis. 2019 Jan 8. doi: 10.1089/vbz.2018.2339. [Epub ahead of print]
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Plague, a flea-borne disease, hampers efforts to restore populations of black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes), which occupy colonies of prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.) in North America. Plague is managed by infusing prairie dog burrows with DeltaDust® 0.05% deltamethrin, a pulicide that kills fleas. Experiments are needed to identify pulicides that can be used in rotation with DeltaDust for integrated plague management. In South Dakota, USA, we tested the efficacy of four pulicide dusts when applied at a rate of 8 g per burrow on colonies of black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus): Sevin® 5% carbaryl; Dusta-cide® 6% malathion; Alpine® 0.25% dinotefuran with 95% diatomaceous earth; and Tri-Die® 1% pyrethrum with 40% amorphous silica and 10% piperonyl butoxide. We also tested systemic 0.005% fipronil, which was distributed as ½ cup of laced grain per burrow. We sampled prairie dogs on 3294 occasions and detected 10,041 fleas. Sevin and Dusta-cide suppressed fleas but only for 1 month. Neither Alpine nor Tri-Die had any noticeable, consistent effect on fleas. Fipronil suppressed fleas by 97-100% for 3 months. The residual effect of fipronil persisted for ∼12 months. Efficacy of fipronil seems comparable with DeltaDust, which exhibited a residual effect for ∼10 months in prior studies. Continued research is needed to optimize fipronil treatments for plague management on prairie dog colonies.