SUMMARY Pymetrozine is a neuroactive insecticide but its site of action in the nervous system is unknown. Based on previous studies of symptoms in the locust, the feedback loop controlling the femur–tibia joint of the middle leg was chosen to examine possible targets of the insecticide. The femoral chordotonal organ, which monitors joint position and movement, turned out to be the primary site of pymetrozine action, while interneurons,motoneurons and central motor control circuitry in general did not noticeably respond to the insecticide. The chordotonal organs associated with the wing hinge stretch receptor and the tegula were influenced by pymetrozine in the same way as the femoral chordotonal organ, indicating that the insecticide affects chordotonal sensillae in general. Pymetrozine at concentrations down to 10 –8 mol l –1 resulted in the loss of stimulus-related responses and either elicited (temporary) tonic discharges or eliminated spike activity altogether. Remarkably, pymetrozine affected the chordotonal organs in an all-or-none fashion, in agreement with previous independent studies. Other examined sense organs did not respond to pymetrozine, namely campaniform sensillae on the tibia and the subcosta vein,hair sensillae of the tegula (type I sensillae), and the wing hinge stretch receptor (type II sensillae).