Insect Growth Regulators

Understanding insect growth regulators and how to use them

Black Ants-insect-growth-regulator
Black Ants

The insect world is so vast, seeking to know all about them and their numbers will blow your mind, they are so diverse and many of them can adapt to the most unforgivable conditions. The presence of insects is and an indication that they are seeking food, shelter, and water but they can become a nuisance and if not brought under control can cause major damage.

It has been said that for every single human upon the planet there are more than 1 million insects which means that the insect world is vast and they outnumber us by far but not too worry as I often say there won’t be and invasion and if there ever is one which is unlikely we have the upper hand on them.

There are many chemicals on the market that will bring insects under control one such chemical being insect growth regulator that has been around for some time and has proven to live up to its name.

What is an insect growth regulator

I am so glad that you asked,  insect growth regulator is a chemical that inhibits the life cycle of insects, in other words, insects going through a molting stage. When molting insects come in contact with these regulators it interferes with their cycle hindering them from reaching maturity.

How does molting occur in insects?

The insect’s exoskeleton serves many functions which include acting as a barrier against desiccation supports the insect, protection or covering for the insect body, excretion, and assist with feeding. The exoskeleton is made up basically of Chitin and Protein, as the insects grow a new exoskeleton is formed inside of the old exoskeleton. The new exoskeleton swells get larger and harden, once a growth regulator is applied it interferes with the insect molting process during this time the exoskeleton is not formed properly which leads to the death of the insect.

 There are 3 categories of insect growth insect regulator

  • Juvenile
  • Anti-juvenile hormone agents
  • Chitin Synthesis


The compounds that are found in Juvenile hormones work by stopping or blocking metamorphosis of insects at the larvae stage from reaching adulthood.

Anti-juvenile hormone agents

When these agents are applied to the instar causes premature molting disrupting the stage that leads to adulthood.

Chitin Synthesis

The chemical work by disrupting the normal molting process by influencing cuticles that are malformed when this occurs their exoskeleton cannot withstand the molting pressure which will cause elimination.

Types of insect growth regulators

Here are just the name of a few brands on the market.

 A Centipede
A Centipede

1. NyGuard Plus.

2. Tekko Pro Insect Growth Regulator.

3. Pivot 10 IGR Concentrate.

4. Gentrol Aerosol IGR – 16 oz Can.

5. Shockwave Fogging Concentrate.

6. Altosid Pro-G Mosquito Larvicide.

7. Archer IGR.

8. Gentrol IGR Concentrate.

9. AzaGuard Insecticide Nematicide.

10. Gentrol Point Source.

The final word of insect growth regulators

Insect growth regulator offers so much help and will make life a lot easier as you seek to win the war on insects that can be a pest. These products have proven to work wonders so for those for you who are thinking about giving growth regulators a try I encourage you to go ahead and see for your self the amazing job these products bring as you seek to live in an environment that is free of insect pests.


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About the author

+ posts

Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.

10 thoughts on “Insect Growth Regulators”

  1. What are the effects of these insect growth regulators on humans? Assuming that farmers/growers have a need for a product like this to keep certain insects from devastating crops. Sometimes the solution can be worse that the original problem. For example, my wife is deathly afraid of spiders, beetles, crickets… pretty much anything that crawls gets her worked up something fierce… she married me for my direct deposit, taking out the trash and killing bugs… see the solution is certainly worse than the original problem 🙂

    • These growth regulators are generally low in toxicity when it comes to humans. The key here is when purchasing or before purchasing read the label also seek help from a sales rep to ensure you understand the mode of action and its effect. Hope this helps.

  2. Hi, Norman.
    Thanks for sharing your information on Insect growth regulators. It was very informative to know how these regulators function as I always thought that they are like Poison and just kills the insects. A different growth regulator for the three stages makes sense. Can you suggest something to control rats menace?
    Warm Regards,
    Gaurav Gaur

  3. The info provided here is so helpful!  We recently started a garden and the bugs ate the leaves the first night.  This would have been so helpful to have to limit insects!  Where do you buy insect growth regulators?
    I was shocked to hear when you said for every single human there are more than million insects… wow that’s crazy!

    • Hello, the insect population is pretty vast, You can purchase growth regulators from your local nursery or garden center. I hope this helps. All the best to you.

  4. Thanks Norman, in my part of the world the weather is moving from spring into summer and the insects in my garden are beginning to get quite annoying. This post is very timely, it’s my first time of hearing about something that could regulate an insect’s growth but I could do with an insect growth regulator right now. 

    • You are so welcome. These growth regulators are pretty amazing and will give good results. Just remember to read the directions on the label before using for best result. All the best to you.

  5. Hi Norman. I have spending a lot of time in my garden due to this quarantine. And I have noted insects in quantities I didn’t even imagine. I begun researching about insect regulators. I have recently been reading about Anti-juvenile hormone agents and how they work when it comes to insect regulators. I find it interesting that this is even possible. Thank you very much for this interesting article.

    • Hello, Ann, it is good to see that you are spending time in your garden during this time because keeping busy helps in keeping our minds occupied, hopefully, God’s willing we will be over this virus issue soon. Insect growth regulator is so amazing in what they can do and it’s good to know that your research lead you to these regulators. Wishing you much success as you seek to bring those garden insect pest under control.


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