Hand-applied dispensers are successfully used in mating disruption programs, but cost of labor to apply these dispensers limits their adoption. Creating hand-applied dispensers that release larger amounts of pheromone and that can be applied at lower densities per hectare could reduce the cost of mating disruption and increase its use. The effect of reducing the number of point sources per hectare while keeping the amount of pheromone applied per hectare constant on the success of Grapholita molesta (Busck) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) mating disruption was investigated with Confuse-OFM, paraffin disk, and Isomate-M Rosso dispensers. For all dispensers, as point source density decreased, numbers of moths captured increased, percentage of orientation disruption to traps decreased, and variability in these measures increased. Decreasing point source density, even while keeping the amount of pheromone applied per hectare constant is not a viable option for reducing the cost of G. molesta mating disruption with hand-applied dispensers. Puffers (aerosol dispensers) are applied at 2.5–5 dispensers per ha for G. molesta control. However, hand-applied dispensers fail when clumped at such low numbers of release sites. Potential explanations for the success of Puffers and the failure of hand-applied dispensers at very low point source densities are presented. The utility of paraffin disk dispensers as experimental devices also is discussed.
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Vol. 103 • No. 4