A survey of antennal responses by five species of coniferophagous bark beetles (Coleoptera: Scolytidae) to bark volatiles of six species of angiosperm trees
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Using Porapak Q traps, we collected the bark volatiles of six angiosperm trees native to British Columbia: black cottonwood, Populus trichocarpa Torr. & A. Gray (Salicaceae), trembling aspen, P. tremuloides Michx. (Salicaceae), paper birch, Betula papyrifera Marsh. (Betulaceae), bigleaf maple, Acer macrophyllum Pursh (Aceraceae), red alder, Alnus rubra Bong. (Betulaceae), and Sitka alder, A. viridis ssp. sinuata (Regel) Á. Löve & D. Löve (Betulaceae). Utilising coupled gas chromatographic-electroantennographic detection analysis, the captured volatiles were assayed for antennal responses in five species of coniferophagous bark beetles (Coleoptera: Scolytidae), sympatric with most or all of the angiosperm trees: the Douglas-fir beetle, Dendroctonus pseudotsugae Hopkins, the mountain pine beetle, D. ponderosae Hopkins, the spruce beetle, D. rufipennis (Kirby), the western balsam bark beetle, Dryocoetes confusus Swaine, and the pine engraver, Ips pini (Say). The identities of 25 antennally-active compounds were determined by coupled gas chromatographic-mass spectroscopic analysis, and co-chromatographic comparisons with authentic chemicals. The compounds identified were: hexanal, (E)-2-hexenal, (Z)-3-hexen-1-ol, 1-hexanol, heptanal, α-pinene, frontalin, benzaldehyde, β-pinene, 2-hydroxycyclohexanone, 3-carene, limonene, β-phellandrene, benzyl alcohol, (E)-ocimene, salicylaldehyde, conophthorin, guaiacol, nonanal, methyl salicylate, 4-allylanisole, decanal, thymol methyl ether, (E)-nerolidol, and dendrolasin. A number of these compounds are known semiochemicals that are active in the behaviour of other organisms, including bark beetles, suggesting a high degree of semiochemical parsimony. Antennally-active compounds ranged from seven in A. viridis to 17 in P. trichocarpa. The fewest number of compounds (9) were detected by I. pini and the largest number (24) were detected by D. pseudotsugae. Six compounds excited the antennae of all five species of bark beetles. The large number of antennally-active compounds detected in common by numerous bark beetles and present in common in numerous nonhost trees supports the hypothesis of olfaction-based recognition and avoidance of nonhost angiosperm trees during the process of host selection by coniferophagous bark beetles.
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