Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Essential oil headspace volatiles prevent invasive box tree moth (Cydalima perspectalis) oviposition - insights from electrophysiology and behaviour.

Abstract

The box tree moth (Cydalima perspectalis Walker) is an invasive species in Europe causing severe damage both in natural and ornamental boxwood (Buxus spp.) vegetation. Pest management tactics are often based on the use of chemical insecticides, whereas environmentally-friendly control solutions are not available against this insect. The application of essential oils may provide effective protection against oviposition and subsequent larval damage. Oviposition deterrence of cinnamon, eucalyptus and lavender essential oils was tested on female C. perspectalis in behavioural bioassays. Our results indicate that all the studied essential oils may be adequate deterrents; however, cinnamon oil exhibited the strongest effect. To determine the physiologically active compounds in the headspace of the essential oils, gas chromatography coupled with electroantennography recordings were performed in parallel with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry to identify the volatile constituents. In addition, the release rates of various components from vial-wick dispensers were measured during the oviposition bioassay. These results may serve as a basis for the development of a practical and insecticide-free plant protection method against this invasive moth species.