The behavioral responses of the female cigarette beetle to 57 plant essential oils commonly used for the flavoring of foods and cosmetics, were investigated with an olfactometer. Forty-eight of these essential oils exhibited repellency and only patchouli oil exhibited attractiveness at a dose of 1 μl. The repellency of the 28 essential oils that strongly repelled the beetles at this dose were furthermore evaluated at a dose of 0.1 μl. Six plant oils (shiso, savory, cassia, thyme, peppermint and Litsea cubeba oils) strongly repelled the beetles at this dose. Then, the dose-responses of these six oils on repellency against the beetles were investigated. These oils exhibited attractiveness at lower doses than each threshold except shiso oil, which did not attract the beetles at any doses tested. The first major components of these six oils repelled the beetles at a dose of 1 μl or 1 mg. However the repellency of these components was less than that of each essential oil. The repellency of shiso oil in the presence of cured tobacco odor, which attracted the beetles, was further evaluated. Shiso oil repelled the beetles at a dose of 10 μl even in the presence of the tobacco odor.
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