Insect repellent properties of Melaleuca alternifolia (Tea Tree) in Perlis
Mohamad Adib, Edris
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Today, pest problem becomes more serious and it is one of the disaster to farmer in which farming is their way to get many for live. Therefore, a research have been done in which use of plant-based insect repellent. This type of insect repellent is more environmental friendly compared to the use insect repellent based on chemical substances where can give harmful to the environment and human health. In this research, the plant that have been used is tea tree or its scientific name is M. alternifolia. This species is originally from Australia. Essential oil from this plant is extracted by steam distillation method. Based on the previous research, tea tree oil have anti-microbe, anti-fungal, antiinflammatory and insecticide repellent properties. Some experiment have been done on tea tree oil to determine there is insect repellent properties. Other than that, it is important to determine the suitable concentration that can be used to make sure it repel effect is in optimum condition. The purpose of this determination is to avoid harmful effect to the human because it can be toxic if it is use in high concentration or high doses. From the experimental result, the result shows that the tea tree oil have repel against T. castaneum. Furthermore, the toxicity assays also give positive result where the tea tree oil have toxicity properties against S. invicta. The lethal dose of tea tree oil to kill 50% of group of S. invicta is 23.52μl/ml. This LD50 is determined by using arithmetic method of Karber. Roughly, the results shows that M. alternifolia obtained insect repellent properties and toxicity against certain insect.