Submitted to: USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research Online
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/20/2006
Publication Date: 1/8/2006
Citation: Koppenhofer, A., Polavarapu, S., Fuzy, M., Zhang, A., Ketner, K., Larsen, T. 2006. Mating disruption of oriental beetle with sprayable sex pheromone formulation. USGA Turfgrass and Environmental Research Online. 5(15). Interpretive Summary: In the Northeastern United States, the oriental beetle is the major pest in ornamental nurseries and blueberries, and causes losses in cranberries, strawberries, raspberries, peaches, and sweet potatoes. The extensive feeding activity of the large grubs can kill the grass and plants. Until today, chemical insecticides are still the primary tools for turfgrass insect pest management. We initiated a study to determine the feasibility of using insect attractants, sex pheromones, to disrupt the mate finding and reduce grubs and adult oriental beetle populations. The results indicated that mate finding was disrupted completely after treatment and efficiency can last at least 14 days. This information will be useful to turfgrass managers and other scientists trying to develop the new forms of attractant, which could make this technology more effective, safe, environmentally and economically sound, and highly integrated in oriental beetle pest management.
Technical Abstract: The feasibility of mating disruption in the oriental beetle (OB), Anomala orientalis, with microencapsulated sprayable formulations of the major component of its sex pheromone, was evaluated in turfgrass. The effect of the applications was measured by monitoring male OB captures in pheromone-baited traps throughout the flight period and estimating OB larval densities in September in soil/sod samples. The results showed: Trap captures were 90 - 100% lower in the treated areas during the first 7 - 10 days after treatment, but started to increase thereafter. Therefore applications were repeated after 14 days in most treatments. The most effective formulation reduced trap captures by 87 - 88% with two applications of each 5 or 20 g pheromone per acre, but only by 74% by a single application of 30 g pheromone per acre. Significant amounts of the pheromone remained on grass foliage after application, but 51 and 73% of this residue was washed off the foliage with 1/8" and 1/4" pos-treatment irrigation, respectively. Shoes walked at one day after treatment through pheromone-treated areas were sufficiently contaminated with pheromone to attract high numbers of OB males in non-treated areas. Mating disruption is a promising strategy for OB management in turfgrass. However, more persistent formulations need to be developed that have a lower potential to contaminate shoes and other clothing articles with pheromone.