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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: BIOLOGY AND CONTROL OF THE FORMOSAN SUBTERRANEAN TERMITE
2012 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
Coordinate an area-wide suppression project for Formosan termites presently being conducted in the New Orleans French Quarter. Evaluate effectiveness of control technology for the area-wide suppression of Formosan termites. Monitor performances of Pest Management Professionals in test site. Evaluate effectiveness of area wide suppression on population levels of Formosan termites and impact of termite suppression on damages to structures in the test site. Analyze the risk to the U.S. of invasive termite, including those already introduced and those that might be introduced in the future.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
The ongoing French Quarter (FQ) program test area was expanded in FY 2007. Properties within the previous expansion areas will remain in the area-wide project and under contract with a Pest Management Professional. Properties within expanded area(s) will be placed under contract with a Pest Management Professional using only termiticides that are expected to reduce termite numbers. Property owners within the original and expanded areas will be informed of progress in the treated blocks and the need to bring their properties (expanded area) into the program. So as to evaluate the impact on the Formosan subterranean termite population, independent in-ground stations and alate traps already installed in the expanded area will continue to be monitored monthly (in ground) each year and weekly (alate traps) each alate season. Similarly, in-ground stations and alate traps installed throughout the FQ (FQ total = 600 in-ground stations and 100 alate traps) will continue to be monitored. Inspections of properties using infrared and/or acoustical technologies where appropriate for signs of active termites will provide assessment of success of the area-wide strategy and will lead to further reduction of the termite densities when followed by treatment with above-ground bait systems.


3.Progress Report:

Pest management professionals have treated a large percentage of the structures in approximately 80 blocks in the French Quarter using baits or non-repellent termiticides according to label and state requirements. Structures enrolled in the program are inspected visually and with infrared cameras. When termites are detected, direct targeted management measures are imposed. Initial inspections in 2003 revealed that 22 percent of the structures were infested with Formosan subterranean termites. The percentage of structures in 2009 found infested with Formosan subterranean termites decreased to 13 percent. These results strongly indicate that the program is decreasing the number of Formosan subterranean termites. Alate (winged form termite) numbers have been monitored at over 100 locations since the inception of the program. The number of alates caught was reduced 50-75% in 2010 and 2011 within areas having the longest history of treatment. The sampling of the 600 in-ground monitoring stations located throughout the French Quarter area continues. The activity of termites in these stations has remained reduced compared to the level of activity when treatments began. The number of alates caught on traps from the levee also decreased about 65 percent. More than 1,440 structures and 3,500 trees were inspected for the presence of termites. Approximately 1.5 percent of the structures and about 1.3 percent of the trees were infested with Formosan subterranean termites. This percentage of infested trees is lower than the percentage of infested trees found in many areas outside of the French Quarter. Infested trees were treated with baits or liquid termiticides and re-inspected. These trees were not found to be infested in 2009. Inspections of trees are continuing in the remaining blocks in the program, and trees that were found to be infested at any time are inspected annually. Fourteen additional blocks were included in the program in 2007. As structures are brought into the program, they are inspected for termites before treatment to allow determination of effectiveness of treatments. This project has been terminated.


Last Modified: 8/30/2014
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