Novel visual-cue-based sticky traps for monitoring of emerald ash borers, Agrilus planipennis (Col., Buprestidae)


Jonathan P. Lelito (corresponding author), 104 Chemical Ecology Laboratory, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA. E-mail:


We examined various methods of trapping emerald ash borers (EAB), Agrilus planipennis Fairmaire, using solely visual cues based on previous work that has documented the importance of visual cues in EAB mate location. Here, we give the results of two of these methods, coloured sticky cards (yellow or blue), or live ash leaves covered with spray-on adhesive to which dead male EAB visual lures had been pinned. Feral male beetles were captured effectively on the sticky traps made from dead male EAB on ash leaves. These sticky-leaf-traps captured more male EAB when deployed in high-population density areas than low-density areas, but did capture EAB even at lower population densities. More feral males were captured on these traps when they were placed higher in the trees, regardless of the population density of EAB. Very few feral female EAB were captured using the sticky-leaf-traps. This novel method of EAB trapping may allow ‘real-time’ population detection and monitoring of EAB adults during the active flight period rather than locating larval galleries during the autumn and winter after adult flight and attack. Feral male beetles were also captured using standard yellow- or blue-coloured sticky cards to which male EAB had been affixed with adhesive; however, this type of trap was much less effective overall than using the sticky-leaf-traps. Furthermore, Agrilus cyanescens, a species similar in colour to EAB but smaller in size, showed a strong response to blue-coloured sticky traps to which dead male EAB had been affixed with adhesive, suggesting a general use of visual cues in the mating systems of some of the other Buprestidae as well.