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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Stoneville, Mississippi » Biological Control of Pests Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #195950


item Chen, Jian
item Wei, Xikui

Submitted to: Journal of Entomological Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/17/2006
Publication Date: 1/20/2007
Citation: Chen, J., Wei, X. Coated containers with reduced concentrations of fluon to prevent ant escape. Journal of Entomological Science. 42(1):119-121 (January 2007).

Interpretive Summary: Interpretive Summary Coating containers with Fluon, an aqueous solution of a "Teflon-like" substance prevents housed ants from escaping a container and is used commonly in ant research laboratories. Usually the undiluted Fluon solution is directly applied to the container walls to prevent the ants from escaping. Diluted Fluon was found to be just as effective as undiluted Fluon in preventing ants from escaping a container. This method will be both cost-effective and reduce the level of waste Fluon in the environment.

Technical Abstract: Coating containers with Fluon is a common practice in ant research laboratories to prevent housed ants from escaping a container. Usually the original Fluon solution is directly applied to the wall of the containers. Various dilutions of the aqueous solution of Fluon product AD-1 (59-62% polytetrafluoroethylene) were tested on plastic, glass, and aluminum containers to evaluate the effectiveness of the coating to prevent ants from escaping a container. We found that the reduced concentrations of Fluon product AD-1 worked successfully to prevent ant escape. For glass Petri dishes/beakers, plastic trays, or aluminum pan, the AD-1 product could be diluted to 1/16, 1/128, or 1/256 of the original solution respectively, to effectively prevent red imported fire ants, Solenopsis invicta Buren from escaping. Use of diluted Fluon solutions to coat the containers is recommended because of environmental and cost-saving benefits.