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Journal of Chemical Ecology

, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 361–371 | Cite as

Mechanism of aggregation behavior inMaladera matrida Argaman (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

  • Ali R. Harari
  • David Ben-Yakir
  • David Rosen
Article

Abstract

AdultMaladera matrida Argaman (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Melolonthinae) males emerge from soil for an active period at dusk, a few minutes before the females. Adults are found during most of the active hours on the foliage in aggregations composed of an equal sex ratio. The mechanism of aggregation behavior ofM. matrida beetles was studied in a Y-shaped olfactometer. No evidence was found for the existence of an aggregation pheromone released either by males or by females, but behavior tests indicate that adultM. matrida beetles, males as well as females, are attracted to volatiles of an injured host plant. The following scenario is suggested: Males emerge daily from soil at dusk, a few minutes before the females, and immediately start feeding. Additional males are attracted to the injured host's volatiles and form aggregations. When females emerge from soil, the attractant volatiles are concentrated in spots, and the females join the aggregations, forming an equal sex ratio.

Key Words

Coleoptera Scarabaeidae Maladera matrida aggregation plant volatiles olfactometer attractant behavior 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ali R. Harari
    • 1
  • David Ben-Yakir
    • 2
  • David Rosen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EntomologyThe Hebrew University, Faculty of AgricultureRehovolIsrael
  2. 2.Department of EntomologyThe Volcani CenterBet DaganIsrael

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