Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/5/1996
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: Interpretive Summary: The Pharaoh ant, Monomorium pharaonis (L.) is a major ant pest in the United States and other parts of the world. It infests hospitals, households, and other human habitations where it can cause problems by contaminating food items and spreading pathogens. Boric acid has been used as a toxicant in a liquid baits against workers of several ant species, but the concentration of active ingredient used was much greater than one percent. Scientists at the Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology in Gainesville, Florida conducted a study to evaluate a one percent boric acid sucrose-water bait in the field against structural infestations of Pharaoh ants. These results indicated significant reductions in the number of foraging ants in the first week after exposure to the boric acid bait and this reduction was maintained thereafter for seven to eight weeks. Thus, the research showed that boric acid can be used much more effectively in baits for ants if the concentration is reduced to levels much lower than what is being used in the presently available ant baits.
Technical Abstract: A one percent boric acid - sucrose water bait was evaluated for efficacy against structural infestations of Pharaoh ants, Monomorium pharaonis (L.). One of the study sites was an apartment complex with a natural infestation of Pharaoh ants. The other site consisted of a group of small buildings, which were purposely infested with Pharaoh ants. Treated and untreated (control) bait stations were replaced once a week for three weeks at each site and then removed from the study. Significant reductions in the number of foraging ants at both sites were attained in the first week after exposure to the boric acid bait and was maintained thereafter for seven weeks in the apartment complex and eight weeks in the small building complex.