Eradication technologies are needed for urban and suburban situations, but may require different technologies from pest management in agriculture. We investigated mating disruption of a model moth species recently targeted for eradication in Californian cities, by applying dollops of SPLAT releasing a two-component sex pheromone of the light brown apple moth in 2-ha plots in low-density residential Perth, Australia. The pheromone technology was applied manually at ∼1.5 m height to street and garden trees, scrubs, and walls at 500 dollops per hectare of 0.8 g containing ∼80 mg active two-component pheromone. Catches of male moths were similar among all plots before treatment, but in treated areas (six replicates) pheromone trap catches were substantially reduced for up to 29 wk posttreatment, compared with untreated control plot catches (three replicates). The treatment with pheromone reduced catch to virgin females by 86% (P < 0.001) and reduced the occurrence of mating by 93%, compared with three equivalent untreated control plot catches (P < 0.001). Eradication programs are following an upward trend with globalization and the spread of invasive arthropods, which are often first detected in urban areas. Eradication requires a major increase in the communication distance between individuals, but this can be achieved using sex pheromone-based mating disruption technology, which is very benign and suitable for sensitive environments. The need for new socially acceptable tools for eradication in urban environments is likely to increase because of increasing need for eradications.
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Vol. 108 • No. 4