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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Relationship of Pheromone Release from Plastic Dispensers to Disruption of Diamondback Moth (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae) Sexual Communication and Larval Density in Cabbage

item Mayer, Marion
item Mitchell, Everett

Submitted to: Florida Entomologist
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 10, 1997
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Mating disruption shows promise as a control strategy for a number of insect pests of vegetable and field crops. Various techniques have been devised for measuing the efficacy of pheromone treatments including reductions in captures of male moths in pheromone traps, reductions in matings by sentinel female moths, and suppression of larval populations compared to fields treated with conventional insecticides only. As useful as these tools are, what is needed is a simple method of measuring the amount of pheromones released on a "real time" basis. Scientists at the Center for Medical, Agricultural, and Veterinary Entomology, Gainesville, FL, have developed a simple, rapid, and inexpensive method for measuring the release of pheromone from Shin-Etsu rope formulations used to control diamondback moth in cabbage. Pheromone emission rates were correlated with reductions in captures of male moths in npheromone traps and diamondback larval populations in cabbage. The technique will be useful in predicting the effective life of pheromone formulations and indicate if, or when, supplemental pheromone treatment may be needed to ensure season long control of pests such as diamondback moth. Use of this technology should improve the efficacy of mating disruption for control of numerous lepidopterous pests resulting in considerably less dependence upon conventional insecticides for pest control.

Technical Abstract: Measurements of the volatile emission of sex pheromone components from commercial plastic dispensers has been related to sexual communication disruption and larval density. The measures are "real-time" analyses of emissions and can be used to evaluate dispenser efficacy. The results of the quantitative analysis from commercial dispensers that were deployed in field assays in 1995 are related to communication disruption and larval density of the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (L.), in cabbage.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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