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Title: Field Evaluation of Essential Oils for Reducing Attraction by the Japanese Beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

item Ranger, Christopher
item Reding, Michael - Mike
item Moyseenko, James
item PAPPAS, R - Essential Oil University

Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/27/2009
Publication Date: 4/8/2009
Citation: Youssef, N.N., Oliver, J.B., Ranger, C.M., Reding, M.E., Moyseenko, J.J., Klein, M.G., Pappas, R.S. 2009. Field Evaluation of Essential Oils for Reducing Attraction by the Japanese Beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Journal of Economic Entomology. 102:1551-1558.

Interpretive Summary: Japanese beetles are serious pests of horticultural and agricultural crops, and in the home landscape. The adults feed on over 300 species of plants. Control of this pest is generally achieved by application of chemical insecticides. Essential oils such as cinnamon, neem, peppermint, wintergreen, etc. have potential as insect repellents. Most plant-derived essential oils pose no recognized risks to humans or the environment. Identification of essential oils repellent to adult Japanese beetles might provide an environmentally-friendly option for management of this pest by homeowners, commercial horticulture and agriculture. We tested a large number of plant-derived essential oils as repellents of adult Japanese beetles. Individual and combinations of oils were tested in traps baited with Japanese beetle lures and captures of beetles were compared with traps baited with Japanese beetle lures alone. Wintergreen and peppermint oil and the combination of wintergreen + ginger oil significantly repelled beetles from traps. More work is needed, however, this research shows there is potential for development of Japanese beetle repellents. The tested repellents would be much safer for people untrained in the use of chemical insecticides, and may be acceptable in organic production of crops.

Technical Abstract: This study evaluated 47 commercial plant-derived essential oils individually or as blends for their potential as adult Japanese beetle (Popillia japonica Newman) repellents during 2003 to 2007. A bioassay procedure used traps to evaluate whether essential oils could repel beetles from Japanese beetle attractant (phenethyl proprionate : eugenol : geraniol [3:7:3 by volume]). Wintergreen and peppermint oils demonstrated the greatest potential for repelling Japanese beetles when tested individually. Several other essential oils also significantly lowered Japanese beetle collection when tested alone (cedarleaf, dalmation sage, juniperberry, and oregano oils) or in combination with attractant-baited traps (anise, bergamont mint, black pepper, cardamon, cedarleaf, dalmation sage, geranium, juniperberry, lemongrass, lavender, tarragon, tea tree, thyme, yarrow, ylang ylang III oils), but were not strong repellents as defined by a published repellence index. The blend of wintergreen and ginger oils resulted in the greatest repellence value measured in the study. Coffee and citronella oils significantly (P ' 0.05) increased Japanese beetle trap collection by 2.1 and 6.7', respectively, when compared to a non-baited trap. This study demonstrated some plant-derived essential oils could repel adult Japanese beetle from a known attractant. Therefore, some essential oils may have potential use in the management of this pest if they can be used to reduce attacks on crop plants or eliminate female oviposition.