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27 December 2019 The Behavioral Response of Blattella germanica (Blattodea: Ectobiidae) Exposed to DEET Varies Throughout Its Life Cycle
M. M. N. Reynoso, S. Mengoni, R. A. Alzogaray
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The German cockroach, Blattella germanica L., is a hemimetabolous insect pest of economical and medical importance. N,N-diethyl-3-methylbenzamide (DEET) is an insect repellent whose effect on this species has received very little attention.The objective of this work was to determine whether the behavioral response of B. germanica to DEET varies along its life cycle. DEET repellence was assessed in small, medium, and large nymphs, and in adults of both sexes, all originated from the same laboratory colony (CIPEIN).The experimental arena consisted in a piece of filter paper treated with repellent on one half (195 µg/cm2) and solvent alone on the other half. A cockroach was placed on the filter paper, and its behavior was filmed. An image analyzer was used to quantify how long the insect spent on each side of the paper. As a control, a cockroach was exposed to a piece of filter paper treated with solvent (acetone) alone. Each assay was repeated independently six times. Distribution coefficient (DC) values were calculated, a parameter that ranges between 0 (attraction) and 1 (repellence). Small nymphs were more sensitive to DEET (mean DC = 0.93).The mean DC values of the other groups varied between 0.62 (medium nymphs) and 0.71 (male adults). The group of medium nymphs was the only one whose behavior was not significantly altered by exposure to DEET.The results show the importance of assessing insect repellents at different stages of the insect's life cycle in order to obtain a complete panorama of its effect.

© The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:
M. M. N. Reynoso, S. Mengoni, and R. A. Alzogaray "The Behavioral Response of Blattella germanica (Blattodea: Ectobiidae) Exposed to DEET Varies Throughout Its Life Cycle," Journal of Economic Entomology 113(2), 1033-1036, (27 December 2019).
Received: 10 October 2019; Accepted: 6 December 2019; Published: 27 December 2019

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German cockroach
sensitivity to repellents
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