Project Number: 3020-43000-033-11-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Sep 1, 2019
End Date: Apr 14, 2020
The goal is to evaluate the optimal lures and traps for surveillance of khapra beetle, Trogoderma granarium and to evaluate the use of behavioral surrogate species consisting of closely related dermestids.
The work will entail a mixture of laboratory and semi-field trials to understand the most effective lures and traps for khapra beetle and related dermestids (Trogoderma variabile and Trogoderma inclusum). This may include wind tunnel assays, dual choice experiments, arrestment trials, the use of video tracking software, and trapping experiments in the lab and in pilot scale warehouses. This may also include understanding whether long-lasting insecticide netting may prove effective for stopping dispersal of dermestids, as well as an investigation of species-specific cues for attraction and repellency. The project will evaluate optimal concentrations and longevity of attractants for khapra beetle by conducting standardized dual choice and wind tunnel assays to assess attraction (Fig. 3, Q1 and Q2). In addition, the mortality, knockdown, and egg-laying of khapra beetle and warehouse beetle induced by LLIN or insecticide coated baits will be directly compared in lab exposure assays (Q3), and exposure to aged versions of each will help assess longevity of the kill mechanisms (Q2). Comparisons of the optimal attractants will be compared with competing food odors such as dog food and flour to understand if the attract-and-kill stimuli are competitive against other odors, which may be present in the environment (Q4). We will evaluate distance of attraction by larval and adult khapra beetle in pilot-scale warehouses in Greece by releasing individuals at specific distance intervals away from the attract-and-kill device (Fig. 4, Q5). Finally, we will validate that these devices work to monitor and manage khapra beetle on small scales and on larger food facility scales in Greece by deploying traps on the perimeter of an area and assessing captures relative to infestation of commodities (Fig. 5, Q6). Results from these efforts will provide new options for detection and low-maintenance management of the khapra beetle that will serve USDA-APHIS, state regulatory agencies, and pest control industries. Data from this project will also determine feasibility of using this attract-and-kill device for management and control of related dermestids such as the warehouse beetle, which is a perennial problem for food facilities in the US. This will help increase the biosecurity of the US, and protect stakeholders in the post-harvest supply chain from ongoing and new risks to the storage, processing, and marketing of commodities. The research project described here will support a cooperative effort involving personnel from USDA-APHIS, USDA-ARS, and collaborators in Greece.