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Effects of White Mulberry (Morus alba) Heartwood Extract Against Reticulitermes flavipes (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae)


B Hassan
C Clausen
S. Ahmed



Publication type:

Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Primary Station(s):

Forest Products Laboratory


Journal of Economic Entomology. 111(3): 1337-1345.


Heartwood extract from white mulberry (Morus alba L.) (Rosales: Moraceae) were investigated for antitermitic activity against Reticulitermes favipes (Kollar) (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae) in laboratory experiments. An ethanol:toluene (2:1) solvent system was used to remove extract from heartwood shavings. A concentration-dependent feeding response and mortality were observed for termites exposed to a concentration series range of 1.25 to 10 mg/ml of extract based on their dry weight. Results showed that maximum termite mortality occurred at 10 mg/ml. Based on the concentration series data, LC50 was calculated at 1.71 mg/ml. In flter paper feeding and repellency assays, extract signifcantly decreased the total number of gut protozoa compared with untreated and solvent controls. After feeding on flter paper treated at 10 mg/ml for 2 wk, protozoan populations were reduced by >55%. In choice and no-choice tests with mulberry heartwood, greater wood loss from termite feeding was found on solvent extracted blocks compared with nonextracted. Complete (100%) mortality was observed after feeding on nonextracted blocks compared with extracted blocks. Heartwood extract from white mulberry imparted resistance to vacuum pressure treated, nondurable southern pine and cottonwood. At every concentration tested, 100% mortality was observed after feeding on extract-treated southern pine or cottonwood. GC-MS analysis of extract showed high levels of the phenol compound, resorcinol. Results indicated that heartwood extract from white mulberry have antitermitic properties and might be potentially valuable in the development of environmentally benign termiticides.


Hassan, B.; Mankowski, M.E.; Kirker, G.T.; Clausen, C.A.; Ahmed, S. 2018. Effects of white mulberry (Morus alba) heartwood extract against Reticulitermes flavipes (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae). Journal of Economic Entomology. 111(3): 1337-1345.


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