Skip to content

Essential oils as tick repellents on clothing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-219
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental and Applied Acarology
Volume79
Issue number2
DOIs
DateAccepted/In press - 23 Sep 2019
DatePublished (current) - 1 Oct 2019

Abstract

Essential oils show promise as natural alternatives to synthetic tick repellents, but few studies have investigated their repellent efficacy in vivo or under field conditions. Here, blanket-drags and standardised walks were employed to evaluate tick acquisition by 1m2 cotton blankets or cotton trousers, respectively, in woodland edge habitats of known high tick abundance. Blankets and trousers had been treated with one of 5% oregano, rosemary, spearmint or thyme oils, 20% DEET (N,N-Diethyl-3-methylbenzamide) (positive control) or ethanol excipient-only (negative control). The number of ticks present on the blankets or trousers differed significantly between treatments: spearmint oil treatments resulted in significantly fewer ticks than the negative controls for both blankets and trousers and significantly fewer ticks were present on the oregano oil treated blankets. For ticks that did attach to the trousers, the rate of drop off within three minutes was significantly higher for trousers treated with spearmint oil or thyme oil than ethanol, oregano oil and rosemary oil. No reduction in repellence was detected over a 24 h period between treatment and testing. The results suggest that 5% oregano and spearmint oils exhibit potential as natural clothing repellents, with an effective equivalence to 20% DEET.

    Research areas

  • habitat, Ixodes, personal-protection, sampling, tick-borne-disease, vector

Download statistics

No data available

Documents

Documents

  • Full-text PDF (final published version)

    Rights statement: This is the final published version of the article (version of record). It first appeared online via Springer at https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10493-019-00422-z . Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Final published version, 781 KB, PDF document

    Licence: CC BY

DOI

View research connections

Related faculties, schools or groups