A trial was conducted to determine the efficacy of termiticidal dusts (arsenic trioxide, triflumuron, and Metarhizium anisopliae), a timber fumigant (dazomet) and liquid termiticides (bifenthrin, chlorfenapyr, chlorpyrifos, fipronil, and imidacloprid) for controlling subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) infesting in-service power poles in New South Wales, Australia. Dusts were applied to parts of the pole where termites were present. Fumigant was inserted into holes drilled into the base of the pole. Liquid termiticides were mixed with soil around the base of the pole and injected into internal voids if present. Poles were inspected for up to 5 yr, and the time taken for reinfestation to occur was recorded. Before the start of the trial, the major Australian pole owners were surveyed to obtain an estimate of the annual national cost of termite infestation to the power supply industry. The annual costs of termite treatment and replacing damaged poles were estimated at AU$2 million and AU$13 million, respectively. Infestation rates were lower for all treatments compared with controls within the first 12 mo of the study. Dazomet, arsenic trioxide, fipronil, and chlorpyrifos were the most efficacious treatments. Efficacy was positively related to the amount of termiticide applied and negatively related to the infestation severity but was unaffected by geographical location. Survival curves were calculated of the time elapsed before the recurrence of termite infestations (survival ≈ absence of reinfestation). Survival was highest for poles treated with liquid termiticides.
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Vol. 103 • No. 6