Location: Fruit and Vegetable Insect Research
Title: Efforts to identify the sex pheromone of the potato psyllid Authors
Submitted to: Meeting Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: January 20, 2012
Publication Date: May 28, 2012
Citation: Guedot, C., Horton, D.R., Landolt, P.J., Munyaneza, J.E., Millar, J. 2012. Efforts to identify the sex pheromone of the potato psyllid. Meeting Proceedings. pg 112-116. Interpretive Summary: An effective program for managing potato psyllid in potatoes requires an effective means of monitoring the pest. Scientists with USDA-ARS, Yakima Agricultural Research Laboratory, Wapato, WA in cooperation with a scientist at University of California, Riverside, CA have begun studies to identify chemical compounds which can be used to attract psyllids from distances. Our results showed that certain female-produced compounds attract male psyllids from distances, and that the synthesized form of at least one of these compounds is sufficiently active to attract male psyllids in laboratory assays and in a preliminary field test. These results may eventually lead to the development of a new monitoring tool for this pest of potatoes.
Technical Abstract: Cooperators on this project previously identified a sex pheromone of a psyllid pest of pears, the first such identification for any psyllid. We now have evidence that female potato psyllids also emit a sex attractant. Attractiveness of females in olfactometer assays depends upon female mating status and time of day. Compounds responsible for attracting males can be collected by washing known attractive females in solvent. Coupled GC-MS analysis of washes led to the identification of several compounds at substantially higher levels in female than male potato psyllids. Preliminary laboratory and field assays with synthesized compounds suggest that at least one of these female-selective compounds is attractive to male psyllids. Identification of an effective attractant could eventually lead to a species-specific tool with which to monitor this pest.