Submitted to: Anais Da Sociedade Entomogica Do Brazil
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 2001
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: The brown stink bug, Euschistus servus, is abundant throughout most of eastern North America and is commonly found feeding on soybean, mullein, beans, tomatoes, peas, cotton, wheat, corn, tobacco and peach. Their broad dietary habit and facility to migrate make these insects difficult to control. Stink bug control has often been achieved through the overuse of chemical pesticides and, in addition, they seem to be immune to the new transgenic crops. The chemicals that the insects produce to attract one another (pheromones) offer a means to monitor their movement and direct them to places where they can be destroyed. The first generation of the species studied here develops on noncrop hosts, and the second generation often migrates to crops where they may then exceed economic thresholds. We found that spring and early summer bugs produce pheromone, whereas late season bugs do not. The main pheromone component identified from spring and dearly summer bugs was methyl 2E,4Z-decadienoate, in agreement with previou research. Furthermore, we discovered that the pheromone-producing state of a male can be recognized by its coloration. Therefore, these kinds of pheromones should be primarily useful for early season generations, for example to try to attract and destroy the first generation insects as a means to suppress the second generation. Extension agents, crop consultants and independent growers can use this information to monitor and develop trapping techniques against these pests.
Technical Abstract: The brown stink bug, Euschistus servus, is abundant throughout most of eastern North America and is commonly found feeding on soybean, mullein, beans, tomatoes, peas, cotton, wheat, corn, tobacco and peach. Color change in Euschistus servus (Say) from green to reddish brown was shown to be an indicator of reproductive diapause. Reddish-brown insects lived longer than green individuals, females laid no eggs, and males did not produce pheromone. The high mortality registered for the green colony of E. servus adults was associated with sexual reproduction. The main pheromone component of this species was methyl 2E,4Z-decadienoate, in agreement with previous research works. The first generation of this species develops on noncrop hosts, and the second generation often migrates to crops where they may then exceed economic damage thresholds. Therefore, traps or trap crops baited with pheromone to catch or concentrate females for destruction, or even a pheromone based disruption of orientation behavior to decrease mating success are possible semiochemical techniques to suppress populations of second generation E. servus.