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ARS Home » Plains Area » Manhattan, Kansas » Center for Grain and Animal Health Research » Stored Product Insect and Engineering Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #337145

Research Project: Sustainable Management Strategies for Stored-Product Insects

Location: Stored Product Insect and Engineering Research

Title: Behavioral response of the invasive Halyomorpha halys (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) to host plant stimuli augmented with semiochemicals in the field

item Morrison, William - Rob
item ALLEN, MCKENZIE - Shepherd University
item Leskey, Tracy

Submitted to: Agricultural and Forest Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/16/2017
Publication Date: 4/19/2017
Publication URL:
Citation: Morrison III, W.R., Allen, M., Leskey, T.C. 2017. Behavioral response of the invasive Halyomorpha halys (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) to host plant stimuli augmented with semiochemicals in the field. Agricultural and Forest Entomology. doi:10.1111/afe.12229.

Interpretive Summary: The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is an invasive and severely damaging insect species from Asia that has become a problem for growers in the US. It is well-known that we can attract BMSB into traps by using pheromones, which are the same kind of chemicals that individual BMSB use to communicate with each other. However, many insects also respond to plant-derived chemicals called plant volatiles and addition of plant volatiles can improve response to pheromones when used in monitoring and attract and kill programs. However, little is known about how BMSB responds to plant stimuli and plant volatiles. The goal of this project was to assess whether the presence of different plants species (Japanese maple, apple tree, peach tree), host plant volatiles (green leaf volatiles, apple fruit volatiles, peach fruit volatiles, or none), and the presence of the aggregation pheromone for this species affects BMSB retention on plants and response to pyramid traps. We found that the addition of plant volatiles provided a small but consistent boost to the retention capacity of plants, and that preferred host plants had a higher retention capacity than less preferred or non-host plants. However, the use of pheromone provided the largest increase in the retention capacity of plants, especially when paired with an already acceptable host. The plant volatile mixtures did not increase attractiveness of traps that contained the standard BMSB pheromone. Captures of nymphal BMSB were decreased by the presence of the plant volatiles in traps with BMSB pheromone. Overall, we suggest that plant volatiles are important for foraging by BMSB, but that the plant volatile mixtures tested in this study did not increase response enough to justify inclusion in attract-and-kill or monitoring programs.

Technical Abstract: While much work has focused on understanding how the invasive brown marmorated stink bug, or Halyomorpha halys, responds to pheromonal stimuli, very little work has explored the response of H. halys to plant volatiles and other host stimuli. The goals of the current study were to understand 1) whether more acceptable, less acceptable, or unacceptable host plants augmented with plant volatile mixes and/or pheromone can enhance the retention capacity of plants for H. halys in the field, and 2) whether plant volatiles (apple, peach, or green leaf volatile [GLV] mixtures) can increase attraction to pheromone-baited pyramid traps. A 3-way factorial designed examining the effect of plant volatiles, pheromone, and host plant on the retention time and distance moved of tagged adult H. halys after release onto plants for 24-h was implemented. Additionally, pyramid traps were baited with either plant volatile mixtures, pheromones, or both in order to understand effects on attraction. The presence of the H. halys pheromones was the primary factor in increasing the retention capacity of adults to host plants, although plant volatile mixtures added a small increase in retention regardless of mixture composition. Plant species significantly altered the retention capacity of adults, and helped to modulate the effectiveness of both the pheromone and additional plant volatiles in retaining individuals. Plant volatiles did not increase attraction of adults to baited pyramid traps, and may have inhibited attraction of nymphs. Overall, our results suggest that host plant stimuli, construed broadly, are important for the foraging decisions of H. halys, but further research is needed to elucidate the most effective stimuli.