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Title: Ability of Plant Stress Volatiles to Trigger Attacks by the Nursery-Infesting Black Stem Borer, Xylosandrus germanus

item Ranger, Christopher
item Reding, Michael - Mike

Submitted to: Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/1/2008
Publication Date: 11/18/2008
Citation: Ranger, C.M., Reding, M.E., Herms, D.A., Persad, A. 2008. Ability of Plant Stress Volatiles to Trigger Attacks by the Nursery-Infesting Black Stem Borer, Xylosandrus germanus. Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting.Available:

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Xylosandrus germanus is of Eastern Asia origin and among the most economically important exotic ambrosia beetles in US nurseries. The attractiveness of stress-related volatiles other than ethanol to X. germanus is inconclusive, and such information could improve detection and monitoring programs of ambrosia beetles occupying the nursery agroecosystem. Research into control tactics has also been hampered by the inability to induce attacks in experimental trees. Baiting trees with ethanol lures has been unsuccessful for inducing attacks by X. germanus. To determine the attractiveness of stress-related volatiles to X. germanus, lures were prepared by filling low release vials with solutions of acetaldehyde, acetone, ethanol, ethyl acetate, or methanol. Bottle traps were then baited with the lures and placed at cooperating nurseries. Ethanol was determined to be the most attractive stress-related volatile to X. germanus when used as a lure in a bottle trap. Methanol was the second most attractive volatile to X. germanus. Traps baited with ethyl acetate, acetaldehyde, and acetone were not attractive to ambrosia beetles. To develop a technique for reliably inducing attacks by X. germanus, an Arborjet® Tree I.V. was used to inject solutions of acetaldehyde, acetone, ethanol, ethyl acetate, and methanol into Sweetbay magnolia, Magnolia virginiana L. Control trees were drilled and plugged, but uninjected. Experimental trees were then placed at cooperating nurseries. Injection of M. virginiana with solutions of stress-related volatiles induced immediate attacks by wood-boring beetles. Ethanol-injection induced the largest number of attacks, while injection of acetaldehyde and ethyl acetate induced significantly higher attacks than methanol or acetone. No attacks occurred in the uninjected controls. X. germanus was the most predominant Scolytinae that emerged from galleries created in ethanol-injected M. virginiana. Results from this study demonstrated that ethanol-injection of living trees results in rapid attacks by ambrosia beetles, which subsequently provides an opportunity to screen conventional and reduced-risk insecticides. Rapidly inducing attacks by X. germanus and other Scolytinae in trees injected with stress volatiles, but not in uninjected trees, also shows considerable promise as a trap tree strategy.