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1 December 2010 SPLAT-OrB Reveals Competitive Attraction as a Mechanism of Mating Disruption in Oriental Beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)
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This study compared the efficacy of SPLAT-OrB, a new pheromone formulation for oriental beetle mating disruption that can be mechanically applied, with hand-applied plastic dispensers in commercial blueberry fields. Both formulations were tested at 2.5 and 5 g of the major sex pheromone component (Z)-7-tetradecen-2-one per hectare, and evaluated by measuring trap shutdown, mating success of caged females, and the number of grubs in sentinel blueberry pots baited with tethered females. All pheromone-treated plots had fewer male captures in traps and lower mating success of caged females compared with untreated plots. SPLAT-OrB, and plastic dispensers at the higher rate, also reduced the number of grubs in sentinel pots. To understand the mechanism of mating disruption in oriental beetle, males were observed approaching the pheromone sources in disrupted plots. In addition, male oriental beetle captures were quantified in plots treated with varying SPLAT-OrB dollop densities per ha. Consistent with predictions for competitive attraction, field observations revealed males approaching the pheromone source and male captures decreasing concavely with increasing dollop density. In a mark-release-recapture study, male oriental beetles responded to SPLAT-OrB dollops and plastic dispensers at least 60 m from the source. Additionally, SPLAT-OrB emitted pheromone that was attractive to male oriental beetles for >5 wk; however, emission rates and attraction dropped rapidly during the first 3–4 wk. This study demonstrates the feasibility of using SPLAT-OrB for oriental beetle mating disruption as an alternative to hand-applied plastic dispensers, and conclusively reveals that a principal mechanism is the competitive attraction of males.
Cesar Rodriguez-Saona, Dean Polk, Robert Holdcraft, Durairaj Chinnasamy and Agenor Mafra-Neto "SPLAT-OrB Reveals Competitive Attraction as a Mechanism of Mating Disruption in Oriental Beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)," Environmental Entomology 39(6), (1 December 2010).
Received: 4 March 2010; Accepted: 1 July 2010; Published: 1 December 2010

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