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The studies of using 25b essential oils as attractants for monitoring and control of pests has been going on for decades as a matter of fact since the 70’s.
Studies show that methyl eugenol has been used effectively for the monitoring and control of several species of fruit flies but methyl eugenol is not as safe as you mihgt think, it has been identified as a carcinogen.
Methyl eugenol: Its occurrence, distribution, and role in nature, especially in relation to insect behavior and pollination
This review discusses the occurrence and distribution (within a plant) of methyl eugenol in different plant species (> 450) from 80 families spanning many plant orders, as well as various roles this chemical plays in nature, especially in the interactions between tephritid fruit flies and plants.
Candidate Substitutes for Methyl Eugenol as Attractants for the Area-wide Monitoring and Control of the Oriental Fruitfly, Dacus dorsalis Hendel (Diptera: Tephritidae)
The recent finding that methyl eugenol, a widely used lure for the oriental fruitfly, is a liver carcinogen for the mouse suggested developing substitute lures for monitoring and controlling of this insect that are not susceptible to in vivo metabolism to active carcinogens. Study of the molecular requirements for maximum attraction of the oriental fruitfly and for minimal likelihood of metabolism to active carcinogens suggested several methyl eugenol isosteres that might be useful replacements. Three compounds were selected on the basis of laboratory and preliminary field evaluation as promising replacements: 3,4-dimethoxypropylbenzene, 3,4-dimethoxyethoxybenzene, and 3,4-dimethoxymethoxymethylbenzene.
Attraction of Female and Male Bactrocera papayae to Conspecific Males Fed with Methyl Eugenol and Attraction of Females to Male Sex Pheromone Components.
The attraction of female and male Bactrocera papayae to conspecific males fed with methyl eugenol (ME) and female attraction to male synthetic sex pheromone, trans-coniferyl alcohol (CF), were evaluated in a wind tunnel. Earlier and greater attraction were exhibited by both females and males to ME-fed than to non-ME-fed males as dusk approaches.
Methyl Eugenol and Cue-Lure Traps for Suppression of Male Oriental Fruit Flies and Melon Flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) in Hawaii: Effects of Lure Mixtures and Weathering
Methyl eugenol (4-allyl-1,2-dimethoxybenzene-carboxylate) and cue-lure [4-(p-acetoxyphenyl)-2-butanone] are highly attractive kairomone lures to oriental fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel), and melon fly, B. cucurbitae (Coquillett), respectively. Plastic bucket traps were evaluated as dispensers for methyl eugenol and cue-lure for suppression of the 2 fruit flies in Hawaii. Methyl eugenol and cue-lure mixtures were compared with pure methyl eugenol or cue-lure over 4 seasons. B. dorsalis captures differed significantly with treatment and season. B. dorsalis captures with 100% methyl-eugenol were significantly greater than all other treatments (25, 50, and 75%). B. cucurbitae captures also differed significantly with treatment but not with season. Captures with 100, 75, and 50% cue-lure were not significantly different.
Attraction of the Jackfruit Fly, Dacus umbrosus F. (Diptera : Tephritidae)and Lace Wing, Chrysopa sp. (Neuroptera : Chrysopidae) by Lure Traps Baited with Methyl Eugenol and Cue-lure in the Philippines 1975