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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Behavior Responses of Larvae of Colorado Potato Beetle, Leptinotarsa Decemlineata (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), to Host Plant Volatile Blends Attractive to Adults.

Author
item Dickens, Joseph

Submitted to: Agricultural and Forest Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 9, 2002
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: The Colorado potato beetle (CPB), Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), is a serious pest of potatoes and other solanaceous plants in North America, Europe and Asia. New approaches to manage CPB are desperately needed, as the insect is well known for rapidly developing resistance to methods used for its control, e.g. pesticides and genetically modified plants. Our recent discovery of attractants for adult CPB offers a biorational, environmentally sound tool for CPB management. I now report the discovery of an attractant for immature stages (larvae) of CPB. This attractant is comprised of three chemicals emitted by potato plants and is also attractive to adults. This is the first report of a synthetic chemical attractant for CPB larvae. Since both larval and adult CPB are attracted to a single chemical blend, the usefulness of the attractant as a component of an attracticide or "push-pull" strategies for management of pestiferous populations is enhanced. This discovery will be used by entomologists to develop an attractant for field use and molecular plant biologists to engineer plants to have volatile profiles that may enhance CPB control.

Technical Abstract: <p>Technical Abstract Orientation of larvae Colorado potato beetle (CPB), Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), to host plant volatiles were investigated in laboratory bioassays. Larvae were attracted to intact and mechanically-damaged (MD) potato foliage. When offered a choice between intact and MD foliage, no preference was observed. Among six synthetic blends that were attractive to adult CPB, larvae were attracted only to a blend comprised of (+)-linalool, methyl salicylate, and (Z)-3-hexenyl acetate. Individual compounds and two-component blends were inactive. Larval responses to the synthetic blend versus MD potato foliage did not differ. Female CPB were attracted to source loads 10x below the larval threshold. Male CPB were the most sensitive life form with a behavioral threshold that was 10x and 100x below female and larval thresholds, respectively. This is the first report of a synthetic chemical attractant for CPB larvae. Since both larval and adult CPB are attracted to a single chemical blend, the usefulness of the attractant as a component of an attracticide or "push-pull" strategies for management of pestiferous populations is enhanced.

Last Modified: 4/20/2014
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