Submitted to: Environmental Entomology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/17/2008
Publication Date: 2/1/2009
Citation: Boiteau, G., Meloche, F., Vincent, C., Leskey, T.C. 2009. Effectiveness of glues used for harmonic radar tag attachment and impact on survival and behavior of three insect pests. Environmental Entomology. 38(1):168-175. Interpretive Summary: In order to develop an effective system to track insect movement using harmonic radar signals, we first must develop the ability to attach radar detection tags on the insects themselves. The attachment of these tags is critical, in that the glue used for attachment should be durable, but also not affect the walking or feeding behavior of the insect. In this study, we evaluated the effect of three glues, Krazy Glue, Loctite, and Bowman FSA, on the walking and feeding behavior of the plum curculio, the Colorado potato beetle, and Western and North corn rootworms. We applied the glue to the dorsal surface of the insect, just behind the head. We found that the glues did not have any impact on feeding or walking behavior of the plum curculio and Colorado potato beetle. However, application of glue to the cornroot worms led to immediate mortality and suggests that a different type of adhesive will be need for insects that have softer cuticles such as these species.
Technical Abstract: The ability of three cyanoacrylate glues to ensure a durable bond between the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say), the plum curculio, Conotrachelus nenuphar (Herbst) or the Corn Rootworms, (Western Corn Rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera LeConte and Northern Corn Rootworm, Diabrotica longicornis Smith and Lawrence) and the harmonic radar tag without impact on behavior or survival was assessed as part of a study on the use of harmonic radar technology to track these insect pests. Droplets of 0.1 mg of Krazy Glue, Loctite and Bowman FSA applied to the pronotum had no effect on the survival of the Colorado potato beetle or plum curculio after five and seven days, respectively, but caused more than 40 percent mortality after only 4 h with both the Western and Northern corn rootworms. The three glues created an effective bond lasting 4-5 d between the harmonic radar tag and the Colorado potato beetle in more than 85 percent of cases and the plum curculio in almost 50 percent of cases. There was no detectable impact of the glue treatment on feeding or walking behavior of the Colorado potato beetle. A more in depth analysis of the same behaviors with the plum curculio revealed no impact on the ability to travel vertically, on the speed of travel or the duration of travel. There was no significant impact on feeding by female plum curculio but a slight indication that males treated with Krazy Glue fed less. Overall, results quantified the effectiveness of the cyanoacrylate glues at providing a durable bond with no significant impact on mobility or behavior of the Colorado potato beetle or plum curculios. However, the toxicity of the glues against the corn rootworms suggests that similar toxicity or sublethal effects may exist with other insects especially those with soft cuticles.