Refuge Requirements for Bt Cotton
With the original Bollgard technology, which expressed only one Bt toxin, growers were required to plant a “refuge” of non-Bt cotton. This refuge would provide a source of susceptible moths for mating with resistant moths that survive in Bt cotton. Bollgard II and WideStrike cottons do not require a refuge, and it is likley that any new Bt cottons introduced will also not be required to have a refuge of non-Bt cotton. However, a refuge may still have value in delaying the onset of insect resistance to Bt toxins. Designated refugia acreage should be located adjacent to or in close proximity of Bt-cotton acreage, and the refuge should be managed with the intent of producing a viable, vigorous crop.