The Relative Toxicity of Trisodium Arsenite and Arsenious Acid to the House Fly, Musca Domestica L.

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Solutions of arsenious acid and trisodium arsenite of various pH values were fed quantitatively to newly-emerged adult house flies. The solutions contained 15 grams of sucrose per 100 cc. Under these conditions, the toxicity of arsenious acid (pH 6.58 to 6.96) was indistinct from that of trisodium arsenite (pH 11.3 to 11.4), possibly the result of buffer action within the digestive tract. The M. L. D. for the two forms of trivalent arsenic was 0.14 mg. arsenic per gram of body weight. This is comparatively a large M. L. D. for an insect. Arsenious acid solutions were not repellent at any arsenic or hydrogen-ion concentration used; trisodium arsenite solutions of equivalent As concentration were not repellent at pH 11.3 and 11.4, but were distinctly repellent at higher pH values. In practice, no more alkali should be added to a house fly bait than is necessary to hold the trivalent arsenic in solution.

Contribution from the Department of Zoology and Entomology.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 1933

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  • Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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