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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Narayandas, Girish
item Alyokhin, Andrei
item Alford, Randy
item Weber, Donald
item Dickens, Joseph - Dick

Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/22/2006
Publication Date: 8/9/2006
Citation: Narayandas, G., Alyokhin, A., Alford, R., Weber, D.C., Dickens, J.C. 2006. "response of potato aphid (homoptera: aphididae) to natural potato odor and synthetic potato-derived colorado potato beetle kairomone". Journal of Economic Entomology. 99:1203-1208.

Interpretive Summary: Insect attractants and repellants can be useful to manage a wide variety of insect pests in the field. However, those odors which are attractant to one pest may be repellant or have no effect on other insect pests. We tested a formulation of plant-derived volatile chemicals (odors) found to be attractant to the major potato pest, Colorado potato beetle. This mixture could be helpful in concentrating populations of this pest in the field so that they would remain away from valuable crop plantings in the field. However, the potato aphid and related species are also important as potato pests, including in the transmission of potato viruses, which can reduce yield and spread through planting stock. Our objective with this study was to determine if aphids would be attracted, repelled, or neither, in response to the attractant mixture directed at the Colorado potato beetle. Although the mixture was repellant in lab studies, this effect was not significant in the field. Our conclusion is that this formulation, when used to manage Colorado potato beetle, will be expected to have no significant effect on potato aphids in the field. These findings will be helpful for researchers and pest managers in designing better management strategies for potato pests.

Technical Abstract: A recently synthesized kairomone blend, based on the volatiles produced by potato plants, has been demonstrated to be attractive to both adult and larval stages of the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say). It was subsequently formulated in a viscous inert carrier for field applications, and showed potential for aggregating beetles in treated areas of the field. We investigated effects of this kairomone formulation on the potato aphid, Macrosiphum euphorbiae (Thomas). The response of both winged and wingless adults of the potato aphid, M. euphorbiae, to natural potato foliage odor and synthetic kairomone odor was tested in a Y-tube olfactometer. Aphid response to untreated potato foliage, foliage treated with the kairomone blend, and foliage treated with blank inert carrier was also tested in Petri dishes. In addition, aphid densities on field plots treated with kairomone and blank inert carrier were compared with the control plots. The odor of potato foliage was found to be attractive to wingless potato aphids but not for the winged ones. The synthetic Colorado potato beetle kairomone odor was not attractive to aphids. In Petri dishes, aphids avoided leaflets treated with both kairomone formulation and its blank carrier. There was no statistical difference between treatments compared in the field.

Last Modified: 10/16/2017
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