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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Miami, Florida » Subtropical Horticulture Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #321317

Research Project: Alternatives to Methyl Bromide: Mitigation of the Threat from Exotic Tropical and Subtropical Insect Pests

Location: Subtropical Horticulture Research

Title: Enrichment of alpha-copaene content results in improved lure for redbay ambrosia beetle, Xyleborus glabratus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae)

item Kendra, Paul
item Montgomery, Wayne
item Deyrup, Mark - Archbold Biological Station
item Wakarchuk, David - Synbiotics Corporation

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/19/2015
Publication Date: 8/3/2015
Citation: Kendra, P.E., Montgomery, W.S., Deyrup, M., Wakarchuk, D. 2015. Enrichment of alpha-copaene content results in improved lure for redbay ambrosia beetle, Xyleborus glabratus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae). Florida Entomological Society Annual Meeting in Fort Meyers, FLA Aug 2-5 2015.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The exotic redbay ambrosia beetle, Xyleborus glabratus Eichhoff, has become a serious invasive pest in the USA, now established in seven southeastern states. Females are the primary vectors of a fungal pathogen, Raffaelea lauricola, that causes laurel wilt. This vascular disease has caused extensive mortality in native Persea species, including redbay (P. borbonia), swampbay (P. palustris), and silkbay (P. humilis), and currently threatens avocado (P. americana) in south Florida. With continued spread, laurel wilt may impact additional Lauraceae throughout the Americas. The most effective lures for X. glabratus contain cubeb oil, an essential oil composed of a complex mixture of terpenoids. To elucidate the primary attractants of X. glabratus, fractional distillation was used to separate whole cubeb oil into 17 fractions (based on chemical boiling point), which were then used as substrates in binary-choice bioassays. Fractions were also analyzed by GC-MS to determine terpenoid composition. Significant attraction of X. glabratus was observed only with fractions that contained high percentages of the sesquiterpenes a-copaene and a-cubebene. This information was used to prepare two prototype lures, one of which contained copaiba oil, and the other a proprietary essential oil product enriched to contain 50% a-copaene. In field trials, the copaiba and commercial cubeb lures captured equal numbers of X. glabratus, but the 50% copaene lure captured significantly more beetles and had field longevity of three months.