Field evaluation of nootkatone and tetrahydronootkatone as wood treatments against Coptotermes formosanus

Karen E. Nix, LSU Agricultural Center
Gregg Henderson, LSU Agricultural Center
Roger A. Laine, LSU Agricultural Center


A component of Alaskan yellow cedar, citrus oil, and vetiver oil, nootkatone, and its derivative, tetrahydronootkatone, were tested for their potential as wood treatments against Coptotermes formosanus. Wood treatments dipped in 1% and 5% nootkatone and tetrahydronootkatone in ethanol or vacuum impregnated (5% only) were tested in a natural setting using termite-infested bald cypress trees along the Calcasieu River in Westlake, Louisiana. Results showed no significant difference in the consumption of the control wood and wood treated with 1% nootkatone or tetrahydronootkatone solutions. Both trials testing the 5% dip method and one trial testing the 5% impregnated wood, for both nootkatone and tetrahydronootkatone, were significantly different from control wood and show good potential as a wood preservative.