Two aspects of the Exterra Termite Interception and Baiting System (Ensystex, Fayetteville, NC) were evaluated in a field experiment using 13 termite mounds near Townsville, Australia. First, a cellulose-acetate powder containing either 0.05% wt:wt or 0.25% wt:wt chlorfluazuron (Requiem, Ensystex, Fayetteville, NC) was tested for its efficacy in eliminating colonies of the xylophagous mound-building subterranean termite Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt). The moist bait matrix was replenished during the first inspection of 10 mounds (five mounds by two treatments) used in the experiment. Second, a single application of the moist bait matrix was used on three additional mounds to test termite responses and the effectiveness of 0.25% wt:wt chlorfluazuron. Although there was no evidence of repellence, there was little removal of replenished bait. Five colonies were eliminated by 0.05% wt:wt chlorfluazuron and five colonies by 0.25% wt:wt chlorfluazuron: another colony was moribund, and elimination appeared imminent. Colony decline was first suspected some 12 wk after bait application, and colony elimination was confirmed, by destructive sampling, about 5 wk later. Colony elimination may have occurred within 12 wk. One colony was an anomaly and did not succumb to the effects of the toxicant. Another colony was not eliminated because of invasion of the baiting system by ants. Ants, principally Iridomyrmex purpureus (F. Smith) group and Papyrius nitidus (Mayr) group, occurred commonly in the stations during the experiment. Microcerotermes sp. was found in five of the C. acinaciformis mounds, after colony elimination. Inspections of small sections of mounds and wooden dowels inserted into mounds were reliable methods for monitoring colony health.
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Vol. 96 • No. 6