The development of baits for subterranean termite control over the past 25 yr has provided cost-effective alternatives to liquid termiticide treatments. Current bait products use one of the few available benzoylurea chitin synthesis inhibitors (CSIs) labeled for subterranean termites. These insecticides are used because of their nonrepellency, their slow-acting mode of action, and their dose-independent lethal time. Although many studies have provided ample evidence of the efficacy of CSI baits for subterranean termite colony elimination, most have focused on hexaflumuron and noviflumuron. However, bait products using alternative CSIs have not received the same level of scrutiny, limiting the amount of evidence proving their efficacy. One such compound is novaluron, the active ingredient currently used in the Trelona ATBS—Advance Termite Baiting System bait product. The current study independently tested the efficacy of this commercially available bait formulation against whole colonies of Coptotermes gestroi (Wamann) (∼63,910 workers) in the laboratory, using an extended experimental setup to simulate a 15-m foraging distance from the central part of the nest to the bait, while having access to alternative food sources. Treated colonies progressively ceased to feed on wood items within 45 d after being provided access to the novaluron bait formulation, with a subsequent progressive collapse of the population, leading to colony elimination by 91 d. This study therefore confirms the efficacy of novaluron baits against subterranean termites, and currently remains one of the few CSIs that can be applied for the successful control of Coptotermes infestations.
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Vol. 114 • No. 3