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Evaluation of fipronil and imidacloprid as bait active ingredients against fungus-growing termites (Blattodea: Termitidae: Macrotermitinae)

  • N. Iqbal (a1) (a2) (a3) and T.A. Evans (a1) (a4)

Abstract

Fungus-growing termites (Macrotermitinae) are important pests in tropical countries. They are difficult to control with existing baiting methods, as chitin synthesis inhibitors are not effectual as active ingredients. We tested two neurotoxins, fipronil and imidacloprid, as potential bait active ingredients against Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen) in Singapore. In laboratory bioassays, M. gilvus showed no preference for doses of 0–64 ppm fipronil, or for doses of 0–250 ppm imidacloprid, indicating no repellence. We tested each insecticide in toilet paper as a bait matrix in a field experiment. After 28 days, termites had eaten 5–13% of the fipronil treated toilet paper, abandoned bait and monitoring stations, contacted no new stations, and repaired poorly their experimentally damaged mounds. Termites ate no imidacloprid treated toilet paper, abandoned bait stations although contacted new stations, and repaired fully their damaged mounds. Termites ate 60–70% of the control toilet paper, remained in bait stations, and fully repaired damaged mounds. After 56 days, all five fipronil colonies were eliminated, whereas all of the imidacloprid and control colonies were healthy. The results suggest that fipronil could be an effective active ingredient in bait systems for fungus-growing termites in tropical countries.

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Keywords

Evaluation of fipronil and imidacloprid as bait active ingredients against fungus-growing termites (Blattodea: Termitidae: Macrotermitinae)

  • N. Iqbal (a1) (a2) (a3) and T.A. Evans (a1) (a4)

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