Abamectin has been a widely used chemical pesticide since 1986 that is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). It also goes by the name Avermectin and Avermectin B.

It can be used as an insecticide, nemacide, and miticide. It is incredibly powerful, but can also be incredibly dangerous.

How Does It Work?

Abamectin works by destroying a pest’s neurological junction in their brain. When it is destroyed, the nervous system becomes damaged, which results in paralysis that is followed by death. It normally comes in the form of a liquid or a gel that is sweet smelling.

The smell attracts the pests and the abamectin will enter their systems after consumption.

You can use abamectin to eliminate pests such as:  

Some sources suggest that it may be powerful enough to kill larger pests like mice. It can be used as bait along with a trap, or ant bait that can be brought back to the colony.

Abamectin has translaminar properties which mean that pests like mites will not return after consuming, so reapplication is not necessary.

Check out our types of pests page to see what kind of bait would be best for your pest infestation.

Is It Safe For Humans?

Always read and follow the label of any abamectin you’re using. Do not directly ingest or breathe in any products. Use caution upon first application, and wear proper protection like gloves to not overexpose yourself to any chemicals. Keep this product away from children and pets.

People who have been overexposed to abamectin have experienced:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive salivation

If you become overexposed to abamectin, follow the label of the product you’re using. Abamectin is not a carcinogen, however, if you become overexposed to it, wash your hands thoroughly and call a healthcare professional immediately.

There have been several reports of abamectin making farm workers who have been exposed for long periods of time feeling ill.

There is a high chance of this chemical being a freshwater runoff risk. For that reason, always dispose of abamectin properly.

Is It Safe For Animals and Other Wildlife?

If cats become overexposed to abamectin, they will generally experience:

  • Irritated eyes and skin
  • Vomiting
  • Trouble breathing
  • Weight changes
  • Reproductive issues
  • Neurological issues like tremors or lethargy

Dogs are extremely sensitive to abamectin, and can even be deadly to them. The following symptoms will develop within 5 to 24 hours after exposure to abamectin:

  • Weakness and lethargy
  • Low body temperature 
  • Excessive drooling 
  • Vomiting 
  • Difficulty breathing 
  • Confusion and other behavior issues
  • Seizures
  • Death

If you believe your pet has ingested any pest control product, contact your vet immediately for assistance.

Because of abamectin’s risk to run-off water and high toxicity, it is not recommended to use on blooming plants. They can negatively affect bees and other pollinators.

Products Containing Abamectin

Abamectin will normally come in a liquid, gel, or dust. Most products are formulated to deal with specific types of pests. Gels can be bought at the retail level in various bait. Higher grade level abamectin is normally sold in liquid form.

The EPA currently doesn’t have any laws on what percentage of abamectin can be sold at the retail level, but if you have questions on safe application, call your local exterminator at (833) 431-0401.

Abamectin vs. Other Products

There are lots of strong chemical products out there to help you ward off pests. Let’s look at some other products that compare to abamectin.

Abamectin vs. Fipronil

This ingredient works similarly to Abamectin by attacking a pest’s nervous system, however, fipronil is safer to use around pets. If you have an issue with an infection on your pet, try fipronil. 

Abamectin vs. Bifenthrin

This ingredient also works by attacking the nervous system, and targets similar pests to abamectin. Bifenthrin has limitations on what can be sold in retail stores.

If you’re unsure if abamectin products are the right solution to protect against pests, try checking out some natural products that can help repel and even kill pests, or call a local exterminator at (833) 431-0401 to see what other solutions they recommend.