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  • Mukesh Chaubey
  • Namita Kumar


Volatile oil, , insecticides, , Sitophilus zeamais, oviposition inhibition, acetylcholine esterase


Synthetic insecticides used indiscriminately in insect pest management programme results in carcinogenicity, mutagenesis, neurotoxicity and teratogenicity in non-target animals and development of resistance in target animals. These issues have diverted the researches aiming insect pest management towards the use of plant volatiles. In this study, insecticidal properties of Cinnamomum tamala (Lauraceae) and Nigella sativa (Ranunculaceae) volatile oils have been evaluated against maize weevil, Sitophilus zeamais (Coleoptera: Curculionidae). Volatile oils were isolated and tested for repellent, toxic, oviposition inhibitory, developmental inhibitory and feeding inhibitory properties against S. zeamais. In toxicity assay, median lethal concentrations of C. tamala and N. sativa oils were 0.396 and 0.334 μlcm-3; and 0.369 and 0.328 μlcm-3 air respectively when S. zeamais adults were fumigated for 24 and 48h. In contact toxicity assay, lethal concentrations of C. tamala and N. sativa oils were 0.287 and 0.205 μlcm-2; and 0.246 and 0.195 μlcm-2 area for 24 and 48h respectively when S. zeamais adults were exposed. These two volatile oils used reduced acetylcholine esterase activity in adults when fumigated with sub-lethal concentrations. Both volatile oils significantly reduced oviposition, progeny production and feeding, but, increased developmental period in S. zeamais. Therefore, it can be concluded that these two oils viz. C. tamala and N. sativa oils can be used in preparation of volatile oil based formulations in insect pest management.


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