- Field Attraction of Carob Moth to Host Plants and Conspecific Females
- Journal of Economic Entomology
- Volume | Issue number
- 110 | 5
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED)
The carob moth, Ectomyelois ceratoniae (Zeller; Lepidoptera: Pyralidae), is a devastating pest in high-value crops around the world. An efficient sex pheromone attractant is still missing for the management of this pest, because the major pheromone component is unstable. Host plant volatiles attract herbivore insects and have shown to have good potential to be exploited as alternatives or supplements to sex pheromones. To explore this possibility in carob moth, we assessed the attraction of moths to the volatiles of mature pistachio and different fruit stages of pomegranate, alone and in combination with virgin females, using sticky delta traps in pomegranate orchards of Iran. Traps baited with mature pomegranates, whether uncracked or cracked, infested or uninfested, caught significantly larger numbers of male and both mated and virgin female carob moths than unbaited traps. Traps baited with headspace extract of cracked pomegranate only caught mated females, while mature pistachio only attracted males. Pomegranate flowers, unripe pomegranate, and headspace extract of pistachio did not attract moths. Traps baited with cracked fruit caught more mated females than traps baited with uncracked fruit. Males were attracted similarly to traps baited with cracked-infested pomegranate as to traps baited with virgin females alone. Interestingly, the combination of cracked pomegranate and virgin female enhanced the attraction of virgin females. Together, our results show that volatiles from cracked pomegranates alone or in combination with female sex pheromone have great potential for application in pest management programs of carob moth.
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