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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: PROTECTION OF SUBTROPICAL AND TROPICAL AGRICULTURE COMMODITIES AND ORNAMENTALS FROM EXOTIC INSECTS

Location: Subtropical Horticulture Research

2013 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416):
The long-term objective of this project is to develop trapping and control components and systems for integrated pest management of exotic pest insects in the Caribbean, Central and South America that pose a threat to U.S. agriculture.


1b.Approach (from AD-416):
Research will consist of field and laboratory studies to determine the life history, distribution and host range of exotic insect pests; to identify semiochemicals; and to conduct studies on the behavioral and physiological roles of semiochemicals on these pests and associated biocontrol organisms. Strategies will include development of attractant-based technologies and systems for detecting, delimiting and monitoring exotic pest insects, and for establishing and enhancing management programs for these insects.


3.Progress Report:
Field tests of bait stations for caribflies. New versions of bait stations developed by a commercial collaborator were tested for suppression of caribflies in field tests conducted in guava. This was the fifth year of testing of population suppression of pest caribflies with the goal of providing new tools for IPM for pest tephritid fruit flies.

Field tests of plant essential oil lures for caribflies. Field trials were conducted that evaluated effect of addition of plant essential oils to traps baited with synthetic food-based attractants for caribflies. Initial tests found reduced capture in traps with pure essential oil plus food-based lures, but subsequent tests found that diluted essential oils may increase capture of caribflies. This information will be used to identify improved attractants for this pest and may lead to improved approaches for control of caribflies.

Field tests of baits for pest drosophilid fruit flies. Field tests were ongoing to evaluate liquid baits as lures for the pest drosophilid African fig fly. Field tests were conducted to test combinations of wine and vinegar, which have been found to be successful for other pest drosophilids. This information will be used to develop baits for this pest to monitor new invasions in areas currently free of this pest.

Laboratory and field tests of effect of surfactants/preservatives on efficacy of fermenting baits. Addition of standard surfactants/preservatives used with aqueous protein baits for fruit flies have effects on fermenting baits that may increase or decrease effectiveness. Research, which included chemical analysis, EAG response, quantification of fermentation rate, and laboratory tests, was used to determine the best combinations. These combinations were then tested in the field and the most effective baits were identified. This information will be used to further understand fruit fly response to these baits and to identify improved attractants.

Evaluation of essential oils for attraction of redbay ambrosia beetle. Previous research by SHRS scientists evaluated the efficacy of two commercial lures for redbay ambrosia beetle (RAB). Phoebe oil lures were highly effective, lasting 10-12 wk in Florida, but unfortunately are no longer available. Manuka oil lures were found to lose attraction after 2-3 wk, but by default, are the current lures used for detection of RAB. Therefore, research is underway to evaluate other plant essential oils for improved attraction of RAB. In addition, field tests are being conducted to determine if ethanol (a common attractant for other ambrosia beetles) will synergize attraction of essential oil lures and further improve RAB detection.


4.Accomplishments
1. Evaluation of new tree species for susceptibility to attack by RAB. Females of RAB vector laurel wilt, a lethal fungal disease of avocado and other trees in the family Lauraceae in the southeastern U.S. As RAB continues to spread, additional tree species are potentially threatened by this invasive wood-boring pest. ARS scientists (Miami, FL), in collaborative projects with the USDA Forest Service and the University of Florida, evaluated two new species for host status to RAB. Lychee (family Sapindaceae), a tropical fruit tree grown in proximity to avocado in Florida, was found to be susceptible to RAB attack due to chemical similarities with the Lauraceae. However, lychee did not support reproduction of RAB and did not exhibit symptoms of laurel wilt. In contrast, California bay laurel, a dominant forest species along the U.S. Pacific Coast, was found to be a suitable reproductive host and susceptible to laurel wilt. Therefore, bay laurel could be severely impacted if RAB were to reach the west coast. In addition, bay laurel could serve as a reservoir for RAB, potentially threatening the California avocado industry.


Review Publications
Amarasekare, K.G., Mannion, C.M., Epsky, N.D. 2012. Developmental time, longevity, and lifetime fertility of three introduced parasitoids of the mealybug Paracoccus marginatus (Hemiptera: Pseudoccidae). Biological Control. 41:1184-1189.

Brar, G. S., J. L. Capinera, S. McLean, P. E. Kendra, R. C. Ploetz, and J. E. Peña. 2012. Effect of trap size, trap height, and age of lure on sampling Xyleborus glabratus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae), and its flight periodicity and seasonality. Florida Entomol. 95 (4): 1003-1011.

Kendra, P.E., Montgomery, W.S., Niogret, J., Deyrup, M.A., Guillen, L., Epsky, N.D. 2012. Xyleborus glabratus, X. affinis, and X. ferrugineus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae): Electroantennogram responses to host-based attractants and temporal patterns in host-seeking flight. Environmental Entomology. 41(6):1597-1605.

Kendra, P.E., Montgomery, W.S., Niogret, J., Epsky, N.D. 2013. An uncertain future for American Lauraceae: A lethal threat from redbay ambrosia beetle and laurel wilt disease.. American Journal of Plant Sciences. 4 (3A) 727-738.

Pena, J.E., Carrillo, D., Duncan, R.E., Capinera, J.L., Brar, G., Mclean, S., Arpaia, M.L., Focht, E., Smith, J.A., Hughes, M., Kendra, P.E. 2012. Susceptibility of Persea spp. and other Lauraceae to attack by redbay ambrosia beetle, Xyleborus glabratus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae). Florida Entomologist. 95(3):783-787.

Kendra, P.E., Roda, A.L., Montgomery, W.S., Schnell, E.Q., Niogret, J., Epsky, N.D., Heath, R.R. 2013. Signature chemicals for detection of citrus infestation by fruit fly larvae (Diptera: Tephritidae). CABI(Council of Applied Biology International, Oxford, United Kingdom. pp228-239 in J>E> Pena (ed.).

Last Modified: 8/31/2014
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