See the results of research testing tricking Asian citrus psyllids using different scents and colors on citrus trees.

A UF/IFAS Article of the Month maintains that Asian citrus psyllids (ACP) “typically relies on tactile, visual and odor cues to detect its host.” UF/IFAS scientists are conducting research into tricking Asian citrus psyllids with different scents and colors, specifically “kaolin with food colorant as an irritant and visual masking, and the combination of essential oils as odor repellents with kaolin,” in an effort to repel the insects from citrus trees and spreading citrus greening. See the results from the article below.

Tricking Asian Citrus Psyllids

The research was conducted in the lab, and it was “funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture.” It has not yet been tested in the field. The article shared the following results concerning research into tricking Asian citrus psyllids:

  • “When ACPs were given a choice between uncoated and kaolin-coated plants, a significant number of the pests chose the uncoated plants over those coated with kaolin.”
  • “Fewer ACPs settled on plants coated with red kaolin than on those coated with kaolin.”
  • “The number of ACPs settled on blue and white kaolin-coated plants was not different.”
  • “An additive effect of thyme and kaolin was observed as fewer ACPs were found on plants coated with thyme and kaolin than on plants coated with kaolin only.”
  • “The combination of kaolin with colorant and/or essential oils may provide an alternative control strategy for organic and conventional growers.”

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