Potential of Natural Products and Their Derivatives to Control Formosan Subterranean Termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae)

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Abstract:

Twenty-nine natural products and their derivatives were tested for both contact and vapor toxicity against the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). Five natural products at 0.5% (wt:wt) in petri dish contact assay caused 100% mortality within 3 d. In vapor form, only three chemicals (styrallyl alcohol, 2-phenyl-2-propanol, and l-carvone) at 0.25 μl/liter air caused >90% mortality in 3 d when tested on exposed termites. However, when termites were shielded by wood and soil, only one chemical, tetrahydrocarvone at 25 μl/liter air caused 100% mortality in 2 d. Preliminary test with termites in carton nests, exposed to tetrahydrocarvone vapor in desiccators, resulted in an average of 98.6% mortality in 7 d. With further development in the method of delivery, this chemical may be very useful in fumigating confined areas of termite infestation.

Keywords: Formosan subterranean termite; natural product; termiticide; tetrahydrocarvone

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/EC10229

Publication date: October 1, 2012

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