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Mating disruption of Lasioderma serricorne (Coleoptera: Anobiidae) in stored product habitats using the synthetic pheromone serricornin

Authors

  • R. M. Mahroof,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Biological and Physical Sciences, South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, SC, USA
    • Correspondence

      Rizana M. Mahroof (corresponding author), Department of Biological and Physical Sciences, South Carolina State University, 300 College Street NE Orangeburg, SC 29117, USA. E-mail: rmahroof@scsu.edu

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  • T. W. Phillips

    1. Department of Entomology, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS, USA
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Abstract

Cigarette beetles, Lasioderma serricorne (F.) (Coleoptera: Anobiidae), cause significant damage to the multibillion dollar food and tobacco industries worldwide each year. A non-insecticidal alternative to manage Lserricorne is the application of mating disruption, in which high levels of synthetic sex pheromone are released to create an atmosphere that results in males failing to mate females, thereby causing population suppression or extinction. The reported work used synthetic serricornin, the predominant sex pheromone of L. serricorne, in mating disruption trials conducted in selected food- and feed-processing facilities in South Carolina during 2010 and 2011. Mills subjected to mating disruption trials were monitored using oviposition cups filled with larval food and pheromone traps for males that contained monitoring lures. Immediately after deployment of mating disruption dispensers, trap captures declined significantly and indicated a reduction in population levels, that is, there was ‘trap shutdown’. A significant reduction was observed in numbers of adult beetles caught in the traps 8 weeks before and 8 weeks after treatment in both years. Beetle numbers from pheromone traps in untreated buildings remained at similar levels or increased after the time of mating disruption deployment in treated buildings. The numbers of adults that emerged from oviposition food cups were generally low and varied irregularly in treated and untreated buildings and were determined to be of little value for assessing treatment effects on reproduction. These initial field studies in the USA suggest that release of the synthetic sex pheromone of L. serricorne for mating disruption can significantly inhibit proper orientation behaviour of male L. serricorne to females and may lead to pest population decline from mating disruption.

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