Toxicity of Plant Essential Oils to Acaricide-Susceptible and -Resistant Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) and Neoseiulus californicus (Acari: Phytoseiidae)

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The toxicity of 10 plant essential oils to adults of acaricide-susceptible, chlorfenapyr-resistant (CRT-53), fenpropathrin-resistant (FRT-53), pyridaben-resistant (PRT-53), and abamectin-resistant (ART-53) strains of Tetranychus urticae Koch (Acari: Tetranychidae) and to female Neoseiulus californicus McGregor (Acari: Phytoseiidae) was examined using spray or vapor-phase mortality bioassays. In bioassay with the susceptible adults, lemon eucalyptus (19.3 μg/cm3) was the most toxic oil, followed by peppermint, citronella Java, thyme red, caraway seed, clove leaf, and pennyroyal oils (LC50, 20.6–23.7 μg/cm3). The toxicity of these oils was almost identical against adults from either of the susceptible and resistant strains, even though CRT-53, FRT-53, PRT-53, and ART-53 adults exhibited high levels of resistance to chlorfenapyr (resistance ratio [RR], >9,140), fenpropathrin (RR, 94), pyridaben (RR, >390), and abamectin (RR, 85), respectively. Against female N. californicus, lemon eucalyptus (LC50, 21.4 μg/cm3) was the most toxic oil, whereas the LC50 values of the other nine oils ranged from 23.2 to 72.6 μg/cm3. N. californicus was 1–2 times more tolerant than T. urticae to the test essential oils. Thus, these essential oils merit further study as potential acaricides for the control of acaricide-resistant T. urticae populations as fumigants.

Keywords: Neoseiulus californicus; Tetranychus urticae; botanical acaricide; essential oil; natural fumigant

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: August 1, 2010

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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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