Submitted to: Florida Entomologist
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 10, 2004
Publication Date: September 15, 2004
Citation: Landolt, P.J., Zack, R.S., Green, D.L., De Camelo, L. 2004. Cabbage looper moths, (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), trapped with male pheromone. Florida Entomologist. 87:294-299. Interpretive Summary: Because of continued concern with adverse environmental and human health effects of many pesticides in use, new methods and approaches are needed to control insect pests of vegetable crops. Chemical attractants for insect pests are useful for trapping or killing targeted species and are widely used tools in integrated pest management systems. Researchers at the USDA-ARS laboratory in Wapato, Washington, are studying the use of a sex pheromone produced by male cabbage looper moths: linalool, para-cresol and meta-cresol. It was found that both males and females of the cabbage looper moths can be captured in traps baited with these compounds, and that females captured include unmated and mated individuals. A pheromone dispensing system was demonstrated along with a trap that can be used for this purpose. These results provide an additional means of monitoring cabbage looper moths in field crops and may provide a useful lure for baiting female moths to reduce populations, in place of pesticide sprays.
Technical Abstract: Traps in field plots assessed attraction of the cabbage looper moth, Trichoplusia ni (Hubner) to lures emitting synthetic chemicals identified as the pheromone of the male: linalool, p-cresol and m-cresol. Male and female cabbage loooper moths were captured in traps baited with racemic linalool, but significantly greater numbers of both sexes were captured in traps baited with the 3-component blend. Virgin and mated female cabbage looper moths were captured, with up to 5 spermatophores per female. Pheromone was dispensed from polypropylene vials, and numbers of moths captured in traps increased with the size of the hole in the vial lid, up to the maximum 25 mm diameter hole tested. Rates of release of pheromone from vials with 25 mm diameter holes in the laboratory was 150 down to 90 ug/h over a two week duration. This is the first evidence in the field of cabbage looper response to the chemicals identified as pheromones of the male.