Consumption of a durable termite bait matrix by subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) and resulting insecticidal activity
A novel durable termite bait was developed to enable continuous bait availability and lengthen the monitoring interval to 1 year. Laboratory studies were conducted to determine the palatability and insecticidal activity of this bait to Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar), R. virginicus (Banks), R. hesperus Banks, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki and Heterotermes aureus (Synder).
Consumption of the blank durable bait matrix was significantly higher than consumption of a blank preferred textured cellulose matrix (PTC) by R. virginicus, R. flavipes and C. formosanus. R. flavipes, R. hesperus and H. aureus consumed significantly more durable bait than PTC when both contained the active ingredient noviflumuron. All bait treatments resulted in significant mortality relative to the untreated controls. Survivorship of R. virginicus, C. formosanus and H. aureus was 2% or less and not significantly different between the durable bait and PTC treatments containing noviflumuron. The durable bait matrix lagged behind the PTC matrix in mortality over time for all species tested except H. aureus.
The durable bait was highly palatable and effective in inducing mortality to R. flavipes, R. virginicus, R. hesperus, C. formosanus and H. aureus in the laboratory. This unique bait matrix will be available to termites continuously and allows for an annual monitoring interval. The durability of this bait matrix is unprecedented, allowing for bait to remain active for years and thus providing continuous structural protection.