Repellence of the tickRhipicephalus appendiculatus by the grassMelinis minutiflora
Mwangi Esther N.
Kaaya Godwin P.
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In a study to develop anti-tick pastures, the climbing behaviour ofRhipicephalus appendiculatus onMelinis minutiflora (molasses grass) was investigated. Experiments were done with cut green stems of grass, grass dried in the shade, grass dried in sunshine, grass washed in solvent and grass growing in a study plot. In all cases a common pasture grass,Pennisetum clandestinum (Kikuyu grass), was used as control. All instars of the tick avoided climbing on the greenM. minutiflora whereas most larvae, nymphs and adults climbed on the control greenP. clandestinum grass. More ticks climbed on the stems dried in the sunshine than on air-dried grass. Acetone was found to be the best of 5 solvents used to extract the tick-repellent substance. Possibilities of usingM. minutiflora as part of an integrated tick control package are discussed