The moth Prays nephelomima (Meirick) (Lepidoptera: Yponomeutidae) is a significant pest of citrus (Citrus spp.), and the recent identification of the female sex pheromone has enabled new direct control tactics to be considered. Six trap designs were compared for suitability in mass trapping, and Pherocon III delta traps were chosen to further evaluate mass trapping. A mass trapping field trial was carried out at five lemon, Citrus limon L., orchards to determine the effect of trap density on catch and rind spot damage on fruit. One plot (0.33–1.0 ha) of each of the five trap density treatments (3, 10, 30, 100, and 300 traps/ha) were operated at each orchard over 12 wk. Catch per trap was reduced as trap density increased and a mean of 12,000 and 16,000 males per ha were killed at the trap densities of 100 and 300 traps per ha, respectively. Increased trap density reduced the percentage of flowers infested with P. nephelomima larvae and reduced the number of moths emerging from flowers. The incidence of rindspot damage on fruit decreased from 45 to 16% as the density of traps increased from 3 to 100 traps per ha. Incidence (percentage of fruit with rindspot) and severity (number of rindspots per fruit) was similar at 100 and 300 traps per ha, indicating that the optimal trap density for reducing rindspot damage is likely to be between 30 and 100 traps per ha. Prospects for converting mass trapping to a lure and kill system are discussed.
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Vol. 101 • No. 4