Flight capacities and diurnal flight patterns of the ambrosia beetles, Xyleborus glabratus and Monarthrum mali (Coleoptera: Curculionidae).
We compared the flight activity of Xyleborus glabratus Eichhoff, vector and symbiont of the causal agent of laurel wilt disease (Raffaelea lauricola), with a native species Monarthrum mali (Fitch) using flight mills. Flight mills were operated either for 24 h or for three 3-h time intervals. During the 3-h interval experiment, the shortest time to flight initiation for X. glabratus occurred at 1600-1900 hours. The average flight time and total flying distance during 1600-2100 hours were also higher than those quantified during the other two recording times investigated. However, total flight duration and proportion of fliers was highest at 1000-1300 hours. We compared several flight parameters. About 64.0% of tested X. glabratus flew <20 m. During 24-h recording periods, M. mali flew longer distances than X. glabratus. Over 50.0% of M. mali flew over 100 m on the flight mill. Xyleborus glabratus flight activity was greatest between 1200 and 1800 hours, while M. mali flew most frequently between 1500 and 2100 hours. Monarthrum mali flew more than five times more frequently than X. glabratus, and their longest single flight distance (37.5±12.5 m) and total flight distance (213.7±85.5 m) were greater than those of X. glabratus. These data will be useful for development of species-specific control and monitoring protocols for these ambrosia beetles based on greater understanding of their flight capacities and associated invasion distance.