Boric acid dust has a long, established history as an insecticide in urban pest management and has been shown to be an effective alternative to conventional neurotoxic insecticides. However, dust formulations of boric acid easily translocate, require specialized equipment, and are difficult to apply. Gel and paste formulations are also less than ideal because they contain large amounts of boric acid and tend to be less efficacious than other insecticides. The purpose of this study was to develop a liquid formulation of boric acid and evaluate its effectiveness as bait against the German cockroach. Boric acid-sugar combinations were evaluated in choice and no-choice assays in the laboratory. Results showed that water solutions containing 0.5–2% boric acid and 0.1–1-M of any of several inexpensive sugars, including fructose, glucose, maltose and sucrose, can provide rapid and effective kill of German cockroaches. Baits consisting of 1 or 2% boric acid and 0.5M sucrose were deployed in a nursery of a commercial swine farm. Results showed significant reductions in cockroach populations compared to population levels before treatment. When baits were withdrawn in the summer, the cockroach populations increased significantly faster than when the baits were removed during the winter. These data indicate that liquid formulations of boric acid effectively reduce the burden of cockroach infestation in swine production. This approach should have applications in other sensitive urban and agricultural environments.
Species 1: Blattodea Blattellidae Blattella germanica (German cockroach)
Keywords: boric acid, livestock
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