Toxicity and repellency of Magnolia grandiflora seed essential oil and selected pure compounds against the workers of hybrid imported fire ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae).
We tested Magnolia grandiflora L. (Magnoliales: Magnoliaceae) seed essential oil and its pure compounds for their repellency and toxicity against workers of hybrid imported fire ants. Series of dosages were tested starting from 156 µg/g to the dose where the treatment failed. Workers removed significantly less sand from the vials with M. grandiflora seed essential oil and 1-octanol treated sand at serial dosages of 156-4.9 µg/g than the solvent control whereas the amount removed at 2.4-0.6 µg/g was similar to the solvent control. In 1-decanol treatments, workers removed significantly less sand at serial dosages of 156-0.15 µg/g than the solvent control whereas the removal of sand at the dose of 0.08 µg/g was similar to the solvent control. In DEET (N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) treatments, workers removed significantly less sand at serial dosages of 156-78 µg/g than the solvent control whereas the quantity of removed sand at 39 µg/g was similar to the solvent control. Based on the mean amount of sand removed, M. grandiflora essential oil, 1-decanol, and 1-octanol showed significantly higher repellency than DEET. 1-Decanol and 1-octanol, present in seed essential oil showed toxicity against fire ant workers. 1-Decanol with LC50 of 140.6 µg/g was the most toxic natural compound followed by 1-octanol (LC50 = 486.8 µg/g). Bifenthrin with LC50 value of 0.018 µg/g showed much higher toxicity than these natural compounds. High repellency and toxicity of 1-decanol makes it a natural compound of interest for further studies under field conditions.