• Aphid parasitoids;
  • Aphidius rhopalosiphi;
  • host plant odours;
  • wheat volatiles

Abstract. In Y-tube olfactometer tests, Aphidius ervi Hal., Trioxyssp., Praon sp., Aphelinus flavus (Nees), Lysiphlebus fabarum (Marsh.) and Aphidius rophalosiphi De Stef. responded positively to the odour of the plant on which aphid mummies containing them had been collected. The response to host plant odour was greater than the response to the odour of host aphids, their honeydew or a combination of the two. The strongest response was to a combination of plant and host aphids. A. rhopalosiphi showed a strong positive response to three wheat volatiles (cis-3-hexenyl acetate, cis-3-hexen-1-ol and trans-2-hexenal) as well as to indole-3-acetaldehyde (a breakdown product of tryptophan in aphid honeydew). In both olfactometer tests with odours and choice trials with whole plants, newly emerged A. rhopalosiphidistinguished and preferred the variety of wheat on which their development had occurred to other wheat varieties.