Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: February 7, 2002
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: The importance of soil insects can not be understated since over 90% of all insects spend part of their life cycle in the soil. In addition, beetles represent a fourth of all animals. Scarab beetles have a long association with man, causing a range of emotions from representing Deity to scourge on crops and our daily lives. Not counting the dung beetles, which are beneficial, plant feeding scarabs comprise an increasing group which cause damage. Unline the rest of the world, introduced scarabs cause the most damage in the United States. foremost among these is the Japanese beetle which is a serious pest both as an adult and in the immature or white grub stage. Other scarabs are pests either as adults or grubs. The oriental beetle and Asiatic garden beetle are other imports from the Far East, while the European chafer came from Europe. None of these introduced beetles are pests in their homeland, but have been freed from natural enemies or biological barriers in their new homes. However, many native scarabs have either been long-time pests or are increasingly important in development and changing homeland conditions. With the elimination of long lasting soil insecticides, there is a world-wide effort to better understand the biology of scarab beetles and white grubs and to try and attack the weak points in the beetles life cycle. Attractants, both pheromones nad kariomones, have been discovered for many scarabs. These attractants can be used for detection, mass trapping, insecticide timing and autodissemination of several insect pathogens. New chemistry pesticides are now available, but their maximum benefit may only be realized by improved application methods, and a more complete understanding of scarab biology.