Canadian Forest Service Publications

Elucidating pheromone and host volatile components attractive to the spruce beetle, Dendroctonus rufipennis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) in eastern Canada. 2013. Ryall, K.L.; Silk, P.; Thurston, G.S.; Scarr, T.A.; de Groot, P. Canadian Entomologist 145:406-415.

Year: 2013

Issued by: Great Lakes Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 34822

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.4039/tce.2013.17

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Frontalin, seudenol, and a spruce terpene blend are key components of a lure for monitoring spruce beetle, Dendroctonus rufipennis (Kirby) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) in eastern Canada, catching the highest number of beetles in several field trials. The standard two-component commercial lure for this species, developed from populations in western North America and composed of 95%:5% (±)-α-pinene and frontalin, failed to elicit attraction to traps in Atlantic Canada; thus a series of trapping experiments were conducted to identify an improved combination of pheromone and host volatiles for this region. Analysis of volatiles from D. rufipennis collected from Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, Canada detected seudenol as an additional female-produced component. Laboratory analysis of the eastern host (Picea glauca (Moench) Voss; Pinaceae) detected the presence of 75%:25% (±)-α-pinene; however, a two-component lure comprised of 75%:25% (±)-α-pinene and frontalin caught no more beetles than an unbaited control. Frontalin and seudenol alone or spruce terpene blend and ethanol alone typically had among the lowest trap catches, but when combined they caught the highest numbers of D. rufipennis, supporting the hypothesis that host volatiles synergise attraction to pheromones. Our results highlight the importance of geographic variation in the response to pheromones and kairomones in this bark beetle.

Plain Language Summary

The objectives of this study were to increase our understanding of the pheromone ecology of the native spruce beetle, in eastern Canada as compared to western North America where previous studies had been conducted. We tested various combinations of host volatiles and pheromones to identify an improved lure for attracting the spruce beetle, as the previous lure from western North America was ineffective in the east. We also determined that female beetles produced an additional pheromone component in eastern populations. We concluded that there is considerable variation in the type and amount of pheromones used in populations of this beetle across its large geographic range. This is important because forest managers must use the appropriate lure combination to properly sample and monitor its populations.