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  • Author or Editor: I. Ujváry x
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Remarkable differences have been found in host-plant related chemical communication between Phyllotreta cruciferae Goeze and Ph. vittula Redtenbacher (Coleoptera, Chrysomelidae). In preliminary screenings sizeable catches of Ph. vittula were recorded in traps baited with either 3-butenyl isothiocyanate, or a quternary mixture of 2-butenyl-, phenethyl-, 3-butenyl-and butyl isothiocyanates. Later studies revealed that Ph. vittula responded better to the above isothiocyanate mixture, than to allyl isothiocyanate, while Ph. cruciferae catches were always greater in allyl isothiocyanate baited traps. Of the four isothiocyanates in the mixture, 3-butenyl isothiocyanate may predominantly be responsible for attractivity of the mixture towards Ph. vittula .As such differences in isothiocyanate preference may occur also in other flea beetle species, for practical applications more efficient, selective and sensitive baits and traps may be developed in the future based on improved knowledge of the chemical communication of flea beetles and through optimal combination of effective isothiocyanate compounds. Both Ph. cruciferae and Ph. vittula rank among the most important pest flea beetles in Europe.

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Trap designs baited with the synthetic sex pheromone have been optimized for trapping of the western corn rootworm Diabrotica v. virgifera LeConte (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) (WCR), which has recently been introduced into Europe. The best trap design proved to be the sticky “cloak” trap (code name “PAL”), which catches only males, and is being used in many countries of Europe for detection and monitoring the spread of the new pest. Preliminarily the range of attraction (as defined by Wall and Perry, 1987) of the pheromone traps was estimated to be <10 m. The performance of yellow sticky plates (used by others for monitoring of the pest) was insignificant as compared to the activity of the pheromone baited traps, and yellow colour had no discernible effect on catches in pheromone traps. The known floral lure of WCR containing 4-methoxy-cinnamaldehyde and indole proved to be active also towards the population in Europe, attracting both females and males. Yellow colour slightly increased catches by the floral lure, hence a yellow sticky “cloak” trap has been developed (code name PALs). Pheromone baited PAL traps caught a total of about 4 times more beetles than the floral baited PALs, which latter however appeared to be preferentially active for females. When placed into the same trap, the pheromonal and floral lures did not interfere with each other's activity.

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