Potential of nanostructured alumina for leaf-cutting ants Acromyrmex lobicornis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) management
BUTELER, MICAELA; LOPEZ GARCIA GUILLERMO; STADLER, T.
AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF ENTOMOLOGY
WILEY-BLACKWELL PUBLISHING, INC
Lugar: Londres; Año: 2017
The present study assessed the contact toxicity of nanostructured alumina (NSA) and compared it to that of diatomaceousearth (DE) on workers of Acromyrmex lobicornis. Laboratory and field bioassays were also conducted toassess whether ants avoid NSA particles. Nanostructured alumina was more toxic to ants than DE (LC50 forNSA = 0.14 mg/g; CI 0.12?0.17; LC50 for DE = 0.36 mg/g; CI 0.25?0.77). The laboratory bioassays resultsshowed that ants were not repelled by NSA. The average repellence percentage observed in the Petri dish bioassaywas 0.66 ± 3.1. No repellence was observed in field tests either, given that ants collected oat flakes treated withNSA (12.7 ± 1.2 oat flakes) in similar amounts to control oats (13.9 ± 1.6 oat flakes) after 2 h. Scanning electronmicroscope pictures showed that NSA was more effective than DE in attaching to the cuticle of exposed insects.This study reports for the first time the toxicity of NSA on leaf-cutting ants and shows that it has greater efficacythan DE in killing A. lobicornis at all the concentrations tested. Thus, NSA shows potential to be used as a dustinsecticide that could be applied directly at the nest to induce mortality of worker ants. Further studies shouldaddress the effect of NSA on the symbiotic fungus, as well as its potential as carrier for other insecticides orfungicides.