Sustainable Management of Acromyrmex octospinosus (Reich): How Botanical Insecticides and Fungicides Should Promote an Ecofriendly Control Strategy.


  • Isabelle Boulogne University of Rouen Normandy
  • Lucienne Desfontaine INRA, UR1321, ASTRO Agrosystèmes tropicaux, 97170, Petit-Bourg (Guadeloupe), France.
  • Harry Ozier-Lafontaine INRA, UR1321, ASTRO Agrosystèmes tropicaux, 97170, Petit-Bourg (Guadeloupe), France.
  • Gladys Loranger-Merciris Université des Antilles et de la Guyane, UFR Sciences Exactes et Naturelles, Campus de Fouillole, 97157 Pointe-à-Pitre Cedex (Guadeloupe), France. INRA, UR1321, ASTRO Agrosystèmes tropicaux, 97170, Petit-Bourg (Guadeloupe), France.



Attini, Mammea americana, chemical analysis, lethal concentrations, lethal doses, lethal times


The leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex octospinosus (Reich) causes serious damage to crops and protected areas due to its foraging activity. The main method of control of this species consists of the use of synthetic insecticides that can lead to environmental damage and negative side effects on human health. Consequently, alternative strategies, such as biopesticides, are needed. Insecticide evaluation by ingestion assays was performed using A. octospinosus in vitro bioassay and laboratory nests. Chemical analyses were also performed to know the contents of plant extracts. This study showed that Mammea americana L. is the most promising insecticidal plant extract in the control of A. octospinosus. Indeed, the lethal concentrations (LC50 and LC99) an the lethal dose (LD99) of the M. americana extract (51.31 mg.mL-1, 131.92 mg.mL-1, and 17.36 mg/g of ant respectively) were the closest to those of Fipronil, 0.03 g/kg, the commercial insecticide used as positive control.


Download data is not yet available.


Arnason, J.T., Mackinnon, S., Durst, A., Philogene, B.J.R., Hasbun, C., Sanchez, P., Poveda, L., San Roman, L., Isman, M.B., Satasook, C., Towers, G.H.N., Wiriyachitra, P., Maclaughlin, J.L. (1993). Insecticides in Tropical Plants with Non-Neurotoxic Modes of Action. In Downum, K.R., Romeo, J.T., Stafford, H.A. (Eds), Phytochemical potential of tropical plants, Recent advances in phytochemistry. New York: Plenum Press. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4899-1783- 6_5

Benita, S. (2005). Microencapsulation: Methods and Industrial Applications. New York: CRC Press.

Bigi, M.F., Torkomian, V.L., De Groote, S.T., Hebling, M.J.A., Bueno, O.C., Pagnocca, F.C., Fernandes, J.B., Vieira, P.C.,

Boulogne, I., Germosen-Robineau, L., Ozier-Lafontaine, H., Jacoby-Koaly, C., Aurela, L., Loranger-Merciris, G. (2012a). Acromyrmex octospinosus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Management. Part 1: Effects of TRAMIL’s Insecticidal Plant Extracts. Pest Management Science, 68:313–320. doi: 10.1002/ps.2267

Boulogne, I., Ozier-Lafontaine, H., Germosen-Robineau, L., Desfontaines, L., Loranger-Merciris, G. (2012b). Acromyrmex octospinosus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Management: Effects of TRAMIL's Fungicidal Plant Extracts. Journal of Economic Entomology, 105:1224–1233. doi: 10.1603/EC11313

Boulogne, I., Ozier-Lafontaine, H., Loranger-Merciris, G. (2014). Leaf-Cutting Ants, Biology and Control. In Lichtfouse, E. (Eds), Sustainable Agriculture Reviews. Switzerland: Springer International Publishing. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-00915-5_1

Boulogne, I., Petit, P., Ozier-Lafontaine, H., Desfontaines, L., Loranger-Merciris, G. (2012c). Insecticidal and Antifungal Chemicals Produced by Plants: a Review. Environmental Chemistry Letters, 10:325–347. doi: 10.1007/s10311-012- 0359-1

Bussmann, R., Malca, G., Glenn, A., Sharon, D., Nilsen, B., Parris, B., Dubose, D., Ruiz, D., Saleda, J., Martinez, M. (2011). Toxicity of Medicinal Plants Used in Traditional Medicine in Northern Peru. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 137:121–140. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2011.04.071

Camargo, R.S., Forti, L.C., Lopes, J.F.S., Nagamoto, N.S. (2006). Studies on Leaf-cutting Ants, Acromyrmex spp. (Formicidae, Attini): Behavior, Reproduction and Control. Recent research developments in entomology, 5:1–21. ISBN: 81- 7736-246-1

Cameron, R.S., Riggs, C. (1985). Distribution, Impact and Control of the Texas leaf-cutting Ant: 1983 Survey Results. Texas Forest Service. Houston: Texas A & M University System.

Dev, S., Koul, O. (1997). Insecticides of Natural Origin. New-York: CRC Press.

Duke, J. (1989). Handbook of Phytochemical Constituents of GRAS Herbs and Other Economic Plants. Boca Raton: CRC press.

Hebling, M.J.A., Maroti, P.S., Bueno, O.C., Da Silva, O.A., Pagnocca, F.C. (1996). Toxic Effects of Leaves of Ricinus communis (Euphorbiaceae) to Laboratory Nests of Atta sexdens rubropilosa (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Bulletin of Entomological Research, 86:253–256. doi: 10.1017/S0007485300052536

Hebling, M.J.A., Bueno, O.C., Pagnocca, F.C., Da Silva, O., Maroti, P. (2000). Toxic Effects of Canavalia ensiformis L. (Leguminosae) on Laboratory Colonies of Atta sexdens L. (Hym.,Formicidae). Journal of Applied Entomology, 124:33– 35. doi: 10.1046/j.1439-0418.2000.00424.x

Heilerova, L., Buckova, M., Tarapci, P., Silhar, S., Labuda, J. (2003). Comparison of Antioxidative Activity Data for Aqueous Extracts of Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis L.), Oregano (Origanum vulgareL.), Thyme (Thymus vulgaris L.), and Agrimony (Agrimonia eupatoria L.) Obtained by Conventional Methods and the DNA-based Biosensor. Czech journal of food sciences, 21:78–84.

Human, K.G., Gordon, D.M. (1996). Exploitation and Interference Competition between the Invasive Argentine Ant, Linepithema humile, and Native Ant Species. Oecologia, 105:405-412. doi: 10.1007/BF00328744

Lewis, T. (1975). Colony Size, Density and Distribution of Leaf-cutting Ant, Acromyrmex octospinosus (Reich) in Cultivated Fields. Ecological Entomology, 127:51–64. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2311.1975.tb00552.x

Lopez, E., Orduz, S. (2003). Metarhizium anisopliae and Trichoderma viride for Control of Nests of the Fungus-Growing Ant, Atta cephalotes. Biological Control, 27:194–200. doi: 10.1016/S1049-9644(03)00005-7

Nagamoto, N., Forti, L., Raetano, C. (2007). Evaluation of the Adequacy of Diflubenzuron and Dechlorane in Toxic Baits for Leaf-cutting Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Based on Formicidal Activity. Journal of Pest Science, 80:9–13. doi: 10.1007/s10340-006-0143-8

Palanichamy, S., Nagarajan, S. (1990). Antifungal Activity of Cassia alata Leaf Extract. Journal of ethnopharmacology, 29:337-340. doi: 10.1016/0378- 8741(90)90043-S

Pérez, P.S., Corley, C.J., Farji-Brener, A.G. (2011). Potential Impact of the Leaf-cutting Ant Acromyrmex lobicornis on Conifer Plantations in Northern Patagonia, Argentina. Agricultural and Forest Entomology, 13:191–196. doi: 10.1111/j.1461-9563.2010.00515.x

Perez, O.P., Lazo, F.J., Morales, J.E.T., Khambay, B.P. (2010). Isolation and Characterization of Active Compounds from Mammea americana Lin. Revista Cubana de Química, 19:74-77.

Philogene, B., Regnault-Roger, C., Vincent, C. (2008). Biopesticides d’Origine Végétale: Bilan et Perspectives. Biopesticides d’Origine Végétale. Paris: Lavoisier Eds.

Plank, H. (1944). Insecticidal Properties of Mamey and Other Plants in Puerto Rico. Journal of Economic Entomology, 37:737–739. doi: 10.1093/jee/37.6.737

Pollard, G.V. (1982). A Review of the Distribution, Economic Importance and Control of Leaf-cutting Ants in the Caribbean Region with an Analysis of Current Control Programmes. Urgent Plant Pest and Disease Problems in the Caribbean. Meeting of the Society for Plant Protection in the Caribbean, Kingston: Ministry of Agriculture.

Sievers, A., Archer, A., Wandre, W., Moore, H., Mc Govran, E. (1949). Insecticidal tests of plants from tropical America. Journal Economic Entomology, 42:549–551. doi: 10.1093/jee/42.3.549

Somchit, M.N., Reezal, I., Elysha, Nur, I., Mutalib, A.R. (2003). In vitro Antimicrobial Activity of Ethanol and Water Extracts of Cassia alata. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 84:1-4. doi: 10.1016/S0378-8741(02)00146-0

Szabó, B., Lakatos, Á., Kőszegi, T., Botz, L. (2003). HPTLC and HPLC Determination of Alkaloids in Poppies Subjected to Stress. JPC - Journal of Planar Chromatography - Modern TLC, 16:293–297. doi: 10.1556/JPC.16.2003.4.9

Verza, S.S., Forti, L.C., Matos, C.A., Garcia, M.G., Nagamoto, N.S. (2006). Attractiveness of Citrus Pulp and Orange Albedo Extracts to Atta sexdens rubropilosa (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology, 47:391–399.

Weinzierl, R.A. (2000). Botanical Insecticides, Soaps, and Oils. Biological and biotechnological control of insect pests. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

Yang, H., Jiang, B., Reynertson, K.A., Basile, M.J., Kennelly, E.J. (2006). Comparative Analyses of Bioactive Mammea coumarins from Seven Parts of Mammea americana by HPLC-PDA with LC-MS. J Agric Food Chem, 54:4114–4120. doi: 10.1021/jf0532462

Zak, B., Luz, D., Fisher, M. (1956). Determination of serum cholesterol. The American Journal of Medical Technology, 23:283–287.




How to Cite

Boulogne, I., Desfontaine, L., Ozier-Lafontaine, H., & Loranger-Merciris, G. (2018). Sustainable Management of Acromyrmex octospinosus (Reich): How Botanical Insecticides and Fungicides Should Promote an Ecofriendly Control Strategy. Sociobiology, 65(3), 348–357.



Research Article - Ants