The sex pheromone of the monophagous Acrobasis nuxvorella Neunzig (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) was reported as (9E,11Z)-hexadecadienal (9E,11Z-16:Ald) (Biorg. Med. Chem. 4: 331–339, 1996), and it has since been an effective integrated pest management (IPM) tool for monitoring this pest in the United States, but not in Mexico. Field and laboratory studies were conducted to confirm that the species in Mexico was indeed A. nuxvorella and to investigate the pheromone chemistry of the Mexican populations of this species. Initial field trials testing compounds structurally related to the known pheromone component, and blends thereof, indicated that a 100 μg:100 μg blend of (9E,11Z)-hexadecadien-1-yl acetate (9E,11Z-16:Ac):9E,11Z-16:Ald in rubber septa was effective in attracting male moths in Mexico. Coupled gas chromatography-electroantennogram analyses confirmed the presence of these compounds in extracts of pheromone glands of females, and antennae of male moths also responded to the alcohol analog (9E,11Z)-hexadecadien-1-ol (9E,11Z-16:OH). Subsequent field trials of various blends of these three compounds in Mexico showed that 1) both the acetate and aldehyde components were required for optimal attraction of male moths of the Mexican populations, and 2) addition of the alcohol suppressed attraction of males in a dose-dependent manner. Tests with the 1:1 9E,11Z-16:Ac:9E,11Z-16:Ald blend at various sites in the United States showed that this blend attracted some moths, but that moths attracted to 9E,11Z-16:Ald alone were predominant in the population. Furthermore, in preliminary studies the latter seemed not to respond to the blend. These findings indicate that there are two pheromone types of the pecan nut casebearer, and they have major implications for the direct use of these pheromones in pecan IPM.
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Vol. 101 • No. 3