Accelerated Degradation of Aldicarb and Its Metabolites in Cotton Field Soils

K. S. Lawrence, Yucheng Feng, G. W. Lawrence, C. H. Burmester, S. H. Norwood


The degradation of aldicarb, and the metabolites aldicarb sulfoxide and aldicarb sulfone, was evaluated in cotton field soils previously exposed to aldicarb. A loss of efficacy had been observed in two (LM and MS) of the three (CL) field soils as measured by R. reniformis population development and a lack of cotton yield response. Two soils were compared for the first test-one where aldicarb had been effective (CL) and the second where aldicarb had lost its efficacy (LM). The second test included all three soils: autoclaved, non-autoclaved and treated with aldicarb at 0.59 kg a.i./ha, or not treated with aldicarb. The degradation of aldicarb to aldicarb sulfoxide and then to aldicarb sulfone was measured using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) in both tests. In test one, total degradation of aldicarb and its metabolites occurred within 12 days in the LM soil. Aldicarb sulfoxide and aldicarb sulfone were both present in the CL soil at the conclusion of the test at 42 days after aldicarb application. Autoclaving the LM and MS soils extended the persistence of the aldicarb metabolites as compared to the same soils not autoclaved. The rate of degradation was not changed when the CL natural soil was autoclaved. The accelerated degradation was due to more rapid degradation of aldicarb sulfoxide and appears to be biologically mediated.


aldicarb; aldicarb sulfone; aldicarb sulfoxide; cotton; microbial degradation; nematicide; rotylenchulus reniformis

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