Common NameSpinosadIUPACmixture of 50-95% (2R,3aS,5aR,5bS,9S,13S,14R,16aS,16bR)-2-(6-deoxy-2,3,4-tri-O-methyl-α-L-mannopyranosyloxy)-13-(4-dimethylamino-2,3,4,6-tetradeoxy-β-D-erythropyranosyloxy)-9-ethyl-2,3,3a,5a,5b,6,7,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16a,16b-hexadecahydro-14-methyl-1H-as-indaceno[3,2-d]oxacyclododecine-7,15-di

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Common Name
mixture of 50-95% (2R,3aS,5aR,5bS,9S,13S,14R,16aS,16bR)-2-(6-deoxy-2,3,4-tri-O-methyl-α-L-mannopyranosyloxy)-13-(4-dimethylamino-2,3,4,6-tetradeoxy-β-D-erythropyranosyloxy)-9-ethyl-2,3,3a,5a,5b,6,7,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16a,16b-hexadecahydro-14-methyl-1H-as-indaceno[3,2-d]oxacyclododecine-7,15-dione
and 50-5% (2S,3aR,5aS,5bS,9S,13S,14R,16aS,16bS)-2-(6-deoxy-2,3,4-tri-O-methyl-α-L-mannopyranosyloxy)-13-(4-dimethylamino-2,3,4,6-tetradeoxy-β-D-erythropyranosyloxy)-9-ethyl-2,3,3a,5a,5b,6,7,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16a,16b-hexadecahydro-4,14-dimethyl-1H-as-indaceno[3,2-d]oxacyclododecine-7,15-dione
168316-95-8 (131929-60-7 + 131929-63-0)
Molecular Formula
C41H65NO10 (spinosyn A) + C42H67NO10 (spinosyn D)
Molecular Structure

General Product Information
Insecticides > Macrocyclic lactone insecticides
Biopesticides & Biocontrols > Biopesticides
Spinosad is primarily a larvicide but also has activity on adult insects and eggs. It is active on species from the orders Lepidoptera, Thysanoptera, Hymenoptera, Diptera and a few Coleoptera. There is little activity against sucking insects such as aphids. Spinosad is active by contact and ingestion, causing paralysis, tremors and incapacitation within hours; symptoms appear almost immediately and death follows within hours. The company claims that insects are unlikely to acquire resistance to this product due to this mode of action. Its activity is generally equivalent to that of the pyrethroids in terms of speed of action and application rates. In laboratory tests Spinosad out-performed other naturally-derived products. Spinosad is intended for foliar application. No crop phytotoxicity has been observed.

Spinosad is highly selective with good safety to pollinators and beneficials. It has no cross-resistance to other new and established insecticides. Thus DowAgroSciences strongly recommends its use in IPM and IRM schemes.

In June 2006, Dow voluntarily cancelled the use of spinosad on collards and other leafy brassica crops in the US state of Georgia as a safeguard against growing diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) resistance. A programme to educate growers on preventing resistance has been running for several years but the problem has not abated, largely due to overuse of spinosad by a small minority of growers.

Field trials in the UK from 2001 (BCPC 2002) indicated that foliar applications of spinosad could provide control of caterpillars in head and flowering cabbages and brussel sprouts plus control of thrips in leeks and salad onions.

Field trials conducted in Poland over a period of three years (BCPC 2002) confirmed the potential for spinosad for the control of codling moth and leaf rollers on apple trees and plum fruit moth on plum trees.

The effect of spinosad on eggs, larval and adult stages of Colarado Potato Beetle was evaluated (IPPC, 2004). Bioassays were conducted in Iran using eggs, neonates, larvae and adults. The concentrations used to treat larval and adult stages varied between 1-80 ppm. Each treatment was replicated four times. Spinosad performed well in the field as it is relatively safe to non-target insects and highly efferctive for the control of CPB. This insecticide will be a suitable candidate for CPB management programs.
alfafa, almonds, artichokes, asparagus, aubergines, bananas, beans, berries, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, corn, cotton, courgettes, cucumbers, cucurbits, figs, apples, citrus, cranberries, grapes, pome fruits, stone fruits, vines, garden beet, herbs, kale, kiwi, lettuce, spinach, celery, maize, okra, ornamentals, peanuts, pears, peas, peppers, rice, root vegetables, stone fruit, sugar beet, sunflower, tea, tomatoes, nuts, potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, Jerusalem artichokes, Chinese artichokes, turf, vegetables, wheat 

Apples, pistachios, citrus

0.069 - 0.175 g ai/ha

Cereal grains

0.035 - 0.105 g ai/ha

Field/row crops

0.053 - 0.175 g ai/ha


9.76 g - 43.9 ai/m2


0.05 - 0.19 g ai/L

Suspension concentrate. Premix Parters: copper sulfate, tribasic oxytetracycline; maneb; oxytetracycline;


AI concn

Suspension concentrate (SC)

48% (w/v)

Suspension concentrate (SC)

24% (w/v)

Suspension concentrate (SC)

12% (w/v)

Physical & Safety Data
Physical Properties
Molecular weight:732.0 (spinosyn A); 746.0 (spinosyn D); Physical form:Light grey to white crystals ( tech.). Density:0.512 (bulk, 20 °C); Composition:Tech. is >90%, composed of 50-95% spinosyn A and 50-5% spinosyn D. Melting point:84-99.5 °C (spinosyn A); 161.5-170 °C (spinosyn D); Vapour pressure:3.0 × 10-5 mPa (25 °C) (spinosyn A); 2.0 × 10-5 mPa(25 °C) (spinosyn D); Partition coefficient(n-octanol and water):logP = 2.8 ( pH 5), 4.0 ( pH 7), 5.2 ( pH 9) (spinosyn A); logP = 3.2 ( pH 5), 4.5 ( pH 7), 5.2 ( pH 9) (spinosyn D); Solubility:Spinosyn A: In water 89 ppm (distilled water), 235 ppm ( pH 7) (both 20 °C). In acetone 16.8, acetonitrile 13.4, dichloromethane 52.5, hexane 0.448, methanol 19.0, n-octanol 0.926, toluene 45.7 (a; Stability:Stable to hydrolysis at pH 5 and 7; DT50 ( pH 9) 200 d (spinosyn A), 259 d (spinosyn D). Aquatic photodegradation DT50 ( pH 7) 0.93 d (spinosyn A), 0.82;
Oral:Acute oral LD50 for male rats 3783, female rats >5000 mg/kg. Percutaneous:Acute percutaneous LD50for rabbits >2000 mg/kg. Non-irritating to skin; slight irritation to eyes (rabbits). Not a skin sensitiser (guinea pigs). Inhalation: LC50 (4 h) for rats >5.18 mg/l.
Environmental Profile
Algae: EC50 for Selenastrum capricornutum >105.5, Skeletonema costatum 0.2, Navicula pelliculosa 0.09, Anabaena flos-aquae 8.9 ppm.Bees:Highly toxic to honeybees when sprayed directly; topical LD50 (48 h) 0.0029 mg/bee; residues have little effect once dry.Birds:Acute oral LD50 for bobwhite quail and mallard ducks >2000 mg/kg. Acute dietary LC50 for bobwhite quail and mallard ducks >5156 ppm.Daphnia: EC50 (48 h) 14 ppm.Fish: LC50 (96 h) for rainbow trout 30, bluegill sunfish 5.9, common carp 5, Japanese carp 3.5, sheepshead minnow 7.9 mg/l.Worms: LC50(14 d) for Eisenia foetida >1000 mg/kg soil.Other aquatic spp.: EC50 (96 h) for Eastern oyster 0.3, grass shrimp >9.76 ppm. EC50 for Lemna gibba 10.6 ppm.Other beneficial spp.:Non-toxic to sucking insects, predacious insects (e.g. ladybirds), lacewings, big-eyed bugs or minute pirate bugs. See also M. Miles & R. Dutton Proc. Br. Crop Prot. Conf. - Pests Dis., 2000, 1, 339.

?Environmental fate:?
Animals:Spinosad is rapidly absorbed and extensively metabolised. No residues of spinosad were found in meat, milk or eggs.Soil:Rapidly degraded by u.v. light and soil microbes to naturally-occurring substances. Soil DT50 for aerobic metabolism 9.4-17.3 d (spinosyn A), 14.5 d (spinosyn D); the major metabolite from spinosyn A is spinosynPlant:On plant surfaces, DT50 1.6-16 d; degradation is mainly by photolysis. No residues of spinosad or metabolites were found in cotton seed.

Mallard duck

Acute oral LD50 > 1333 mg/kg Slightly toxic

Bobwhite quail

Acute oral LD50 > 1333 mg/kg Slightly toxic

Bobwhite quail

Dietary LC50 > 5156 ppm Practically non-toxic

Rainbow trout [96 h]

LC50 30 mg/L Slightly toxic

Bluegill sunfish [96 h]

LC50 5.94 mg/L Moderately toxic

Carp [96 h]

LC50 5 mg/L

Daphnia[48 h]

EC50 14 ppm Slightly toxic

Sheepshead minnow

LC50 7.9 mg/L Moderately toxic

Grass shrimp

LC50 >9.6 ppm Moderately toxic

Eastern oyster

EC50 0.3 ppm Very highly toxic

Lemna gibba

EC50 10.6 ppm

Selenastrum cap.

EC50 > 105.5 ppm

Skeletonoma cost.

EC50 0.23 ppm

Anabaena f-aquae

EC50 8.9 ppm

Non-target terrestrial plant

EC25 202 g ai/ha

Bee [contact]

LD50 0.0025 μg/bee

Fate in : 
The major route of dissipation of spinosad from plant surfaces is photolysis; the resultant residues are then available for metabolism by the plant.
Spinosad is under development in the US as bait for the control of fruit flies on various crops. GF-120 was pending approval in late 2002. The efficacy of GF-120 at various application intervals and its field longevity was evaluated for the control of walnut husk fly under different environmental conditions (ESA 2002).

Fate in soil: 
Spinosad adsorbs strongly to soil particles and is therefore unlikely to leach to great depths. It is classified as relatively immobile to immobile (Kads from 5.4 to 323) and Koc ranges from 884 cm3/g in loamy sand to 145,250 cm3/g in silt loam. In field dissipation studies, spinosyn A degrades rapidly with a half-life of 0.3 - 0.5 days and there is no detectable radioactivity below the 18 - 24 inch level in studies in Mississippi and California. Whilst spinosad is metabolised rapidly by soil microorganisms under aerobic conditions, the half-life is much longer under anaerobic conditions:
Aerobic soil metabolism; DT50 = 17.3 days (spinosyn A), 14.5 days (spinosyn D)
Anaerobic flooded soil; DT50 = 161 days (spinosyn A), 250 days (spinosyn D)
The major route of metabolism in aerobic soil is via N-monodemethylation.

Fate in aquatic systems: 
Photolysis is the major route of degradation of spinosad in aqueous systems with DT50 = 0.96 day for spinosyn A, and DT50 = 0.84 day (spinosyn D)
The half-lives for hydrolysis are       DT50 at pH 7, 25°C >30 days (spinosyn A and D) DT50 at pH 9, 25°C =200 days (spinosyn A) DT50 at pH 9, 25°C = 259days (spinosyn D)

Transport Information
Hazard Class:III(Slightly hazardous)
Agrochemical Pesticide Fungicide Spinosad

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