Field trapping studies were conducted to determine whether feral blueberry maggot flies, Rhagoletis mendax Curran, and Eastern cherry fruit flies, R. cingulata (Loew), respond to natal host-fruit volatiles. Subsequent experiments were conducted to evaluate the potential of using simple and inexpensive fruit juice concentrate lures to monitor these key pests of blueberries and cherries, respectively. The presence of ripe blueberries and ripe tart cherries in enclosures that permitted escape of fruit volatiles significantly increased captures of R. mendax and R. cingulata, respectively, on adjacent sticky traps compared with traps without adjacent fruit. R. mendax were not affected by addition of blueberry concentrate to Pherocon AM traps with or without ammonium acetate. Pherocon AM boards prebaited with ammonium acetate directly incorporated into the sticky Tangle-Foot coating were equally effective as unbaited Pherocon AM boards deployed with separate ammonium acetate dispensers for monitoring R. mendax. A cherry juice concentrate increased captures of R. cingulata on unbaited Pherocon AM but not Rebell traps. In addition, combining cherry juice concentrate and ammonium acetate on Pherocon AM traps increased captures of R. cingulata compared with captures on traps with either stimulus alone. Adding ammonium acetate lures to Rebell traps more than doubled captures of R. cingulata over that on unbaited Rebell traps. Our results show that feral R. mendax and R. cingulata flies are attracted to the volatiles emitted from their host fruit and that this may be exploited to improve monitoring of these important fruit pests.
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