Monitoring of Tuta absoluta (tomato leaf miner) using pheromone traps: a recent invasive pest in India.
The South American tomato leaf miner, Tuta absoluta (Lepidoptera: Gelechlidae) is a recent invasive pest on tomato in India. Female sex pheromone of this devastating pest was identified in 1996 and field tested in several countries. Field studies were conducted near Bengaluru, Karnataka under farmers field conditions using female sex pheromone traps of tomato leaf miner, a recent invasive pest in India for evaluating its attraction and efficacy. Studies were carried out to monitor the infestation level of Tuta absoluta moths in tomato fields and found that early detection is possible by using pheromone traps before the visible damage happens. Among the four traps tested, water traps were found to trap more number of moths than Funnel trap, Sticky trap and Delta trap. The traps were attracting up to 100 feet distance away from the infested tomato crop indicating TLM pheromone is highly effective in field. TLM moths are very good fliers and infestation may spread very fast in fields located within short distance which indicates that early detection and control measures will be useful to protect the crop. Release rate studies showed that the pheromone lure is capable of attracting and trapping TLM moths up to 90 days.