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item Vitullo, Justin
item Wang, Shifa
item Zhang, Aijun
item Minnion, Catharine
item Bergh, J. Christopher

Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/12/2006
Publication Date: 8/15/2006
Citation: Vitullo, J., Wang, S., Zhang, A., Minnion, C., Bergh, J. Comparison of sex pheromone traps for monitoring pink hibiscus mealybug, (hemiptera: pseudococcidae). Journal of Economic Entomology 100(2):405-410.

Interpretive Summary: The pink hibiscus mealybug has been found in many of the world’s tropical and semi-tropical regions and is considered a potentially serious pest of numerous economically important crops, including citrus, ornamentals and vegetables. Traps baited with a chemical attractant are currently used for monitoring the presence and spread of pink hibiscus mealybug in the southern United States. To optimize efficiency and standardize trapping protocols, we compared the effectiveness of five commercially available traps, based on the capture of male pink hibiscus mealybugs. This information will help scientists understand the biology of this pest and facilitate early detection of new infestations and the timely application of control measures by regulatory agencies.

Technical Abstract: The pink hibiscus mealybug, Maconellicoccus hirsutus Green, is a highly polyphagous pest that recently invaded Florida. Although identification of its sex pheromone in 2004 improved monitoring capabilities tremendously, the effectiveness and efficiency of different pheromone trap designs for capturing males has not been evaluated. We deployed green Delta, Pherocon IIB, Pherocon V, Jackson and Storgard Thinline traps in Homestead, FL and compared the number of male M. hirsutus captured per trap, the number captured per unit of trapping surface area, the amount of extraneous material captured and the time taken to count trapped mealybugs. Pheromone-baited traps with larger trapping surfaces (green Delta, Pherocon IIB and Pherocon V) captured more males per trap than those with smaller surfaces (Jackson and Storgard Thinline), and fewest males were captured by Storgard Thinline traps. However, Jackson traps captured as many or more males per cm2 of trapping surface as those with larger surfaces, and the time required to count males in Jackson traps was significantly less than in green Delta, Pherocon IIB and Pherocon V traps. Although all trap designs accumulated some debris and non-target insects, this was rated as light to moderate for all designs. Based on our measures of effectiveness and efficiency, our results suggest that the Jackson trap is most suitable for monitoring M. hirsutus populations. Additionally, unlike the other traps evaluated, which must be replaced entirely or inspected in the field and then redeployed; only the sticky liners of Jackson traps require replacement, enhancing the efficiency of trap servicing.