Sorghum, Maize, Summer Grain Legumes – Heliothis/Cotton bollworm/Native budworm (𝘏𝘦𝘭𝘪𝘤𝘰𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘱𝘢 spp.)

Crop:         Sorghum, Maize, Summer Grain Legumes

Insect(s): Heliothis/Cotton bollworm/Native budworm (Helicoverpa spp.)


  1. To help prevent the development of resistance to any one specific active ingredient (see table below), observe the following instructions:
  • Use in accordance with the current IRMS for your region.
  • Apply a specific active ingredient using a “window” approach to avoid exposure of consecutive insect pest generations to the same mode of action. Multiple successive applications of a specific active ingredient are acceptable if they are used to treat a single pest generation.
  • Following a “window” of a specific mode of action product, rotate to a “window” of applications of effective insecticides with a different mode of action.
  • The total exposure period of any one mode of action “active window” applied throughout the crop cycle (from seedling to harvest) should not exceed 50% of the crop cycle.
  • Incorporate IPM techniques into the overall pest management program and
  • Monitor insect populations for loss of field efficacy.
  1. Always read and follow product labels. Some products place a limit on the number of times they can be applied per crop (see table below) and when they can be applied.
  2. Monitor crops regularly and only apply insecticide when the pest threshold is reached.
  3. Ensure spray equipment is properly calibrated and achieving good coverage with appropriate sized spray droplets.
  4. Time the application to the most susceptible life stage of the target pest.
  5. To encourage beneficial insects, use Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) or NPV sprays and avoid broad spectrum insecticides where possible, particularly early to mid-crop cycle.
  6. Be cautious of using insecticide tank-mixes where both active ingredients control Helicoverpa spp. as this strategy is generally not considered best practice for resistance management. Refer to document IRAC International Insecticide Mixture Statement for more information on this subject.
  7. DO NOT re-treat a spray failure with a product from the same chemical group.
  8. Practice effective pupae busting as soon as practicable after harvest.
Group* Active ingredient Number applications per crop per season¥ Crops¥
1A Methomyl (eg. Lannate® L), thiodicarb (eg. Larvin®) not specified All cereal grains, oilseed, pulses
3A synthetic pyrethroids (various – eg. Dominex® Duo, Karate® Zeon, Sumi-alpha® Flex, Trojan®) not specified All cereal grains, oilseed, pulses
5 Spinetoram (Success® Neo) 2 All pulses
5 + 18 Spinetoram + methoxyfenozide (Intrepid Edge®) Chickpeas: 1.
Mung beans: 2
Mung beans
6 Emamectin benzoate (eg. Affirm®) 2 All pulses
11A Bacillus thuringiensis (eg. Dipel®, Xentari®) not specified All cereal grains, oilseed, pulses
22A Indoxacarb (eg. Steward® EC) 1 chickpea, faba bean, mung bean, soybean, azuki bean
28 Chlorantraniliprole (Vantacor®) Refer to label All pulses
UN Nucleopolyhedrovirus (NPV) – (eg. Gemstar®, Vivus® Max) no limit but avoid season long use of low rates All cereal grains, oilseed, pulses

*Refer: CropLife Australia Expert Committee on Insecticide Resistance Mode of Action Classification for Insecticides

¥Refer: Registered product label


  1. For more information refer to the IPM Guidelines armigera RMS for Australian grains:
  2. ***POTENTIAL LINK*** to NSW DPI resistance monitoring updates.

Notes regarding the application of insecticides:

  1. To ensure the most effective control of the pest:
    1. Product labels should at all times be carefully read and adhered to;
    2. Full recommended rates of registered insecticides should always be used; and
    3. Ensure good coverage of the target area to maximise contact.

Content last updated: July 14, 2023

CropLife Australia’s Resistance Management Strategies provide a guide for crop protection product rotation through product groups. The strategies are a useful tool that supports farmers’ adoption of resistance management. All crop protection products must be handled and applied strictly as specified on the product label or APVMA permits.

These Resistance Management Strategies do not replace product labels. They are a guide only and do not endorse particular products, groups of products or cultural methods in terms of their performance. It is important to check with the Australian regulator’s (APVMA) product database for contemporary information on products and active constituents. The database can be sourced through

The information given in this strategy is provided in good faith and without any liability for loss or damage suffered as a result of its application and use. Advice given in this strategy is valid as at 14 July 2023. All previous versions of this strategy are now invalid.