Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Antennal sensitivity to female sex pheromone compounds of Spodoptera frugiperda males (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and associated field behaviour.

Abstract

The fall armyworm (FAW), Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), is one of the most important insect pests of corn, sorghum, rice, and grasses. The sex pheromone produced by S. frugiperda is composed of a mixture of esters. In this study, I determined the antennal responses of FAW males from 22 populations in Mexico to the components of the sex pheromone of this species: (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate (Z7-12:OAc), (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetate (Z9-14:OAc), and (Z)-11-hexadecenyl acetate (Z11-16:OAc) at four doses (0.01, 0.1, 1, and 10 μg). In addition, I evaluated the behavioural activity of single compounds in the field. The largest antennal responses of FAW males from all the sampled regions were elicited by Z9-14:OAc (all doses evaluated) and Z7-12:OAc (0.01, 0.1, and 1 μg). The male antennal responses evoked by Z11-16:OAc were smaller but similar to responses to Z7-12:OAc at lower doses (0.01 and 0.1 μg). In the field test, Z9-14:OAc produced significantly higher captures of S. frugiperda males compared to Z7-12:AOc and Z11-16:OAc. Antennal responses were related to captures obtained in the field, supported by the positive correlation of these variables [electroantennography (EAG) response and behaviour], with the exception of Z7-12:OAc, which elicited relatively large EAG responses but did not produce high captures of S. frugiperda. These results are of importance to agriculture, enabling the implementation of better methods of monitoring and controlling this pest, and support the suggestion that a mixture of Z9-14:OAc and Z7-12:OAc could represent an effective attractant for all evaluated populations of S. frugiperda in Mexico.