Dynamics of pheromone production and communication in the mountain pine beetle, Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins, and the pine engraver, Ips pini (Say) (Coleoptera: Scolytidae)
The mountain pine beetle, Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins, and the pine engraver, Ips pini (Say), often co-exist in lodgepole pine, Pinus contorta var. latifolia Engelmann. Intra- and interspecific semiochemical communication occurs in both species and their complete semiochemical repertoire and precise dynamics of pheromone production have not been elucidated. Porapak-Q extracts of captured volatiles from beetles of each species aerated at different attack phases (freshly emerged, pioneer sex alone in the log and both sexes paired in new galleries), followed by gas chromatographic-electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD) and GC-mass spectroscopic analyses identified 17 compounds (seven compounds common to both species, six present in D. ponderosae and four present in I. pini) that excited the antennae of either or both species. Seven compounds for D. ponderosae and nine for I. pini had not been assessed for behavioural activity. In field trapping experiments, 2-phenylethanol produced by both species inhibited the response of D. ponderosae to its aggregation pheromones. exo- and endo-Brevicomin produced by D. ponderosae significantly decreased the response of I. pini to its aggregation pheromone ipsdienol. Nonanal, a ubiquitous compound found in the volatiles of lodgepole pine, various nonhosts and in both beetle species deterred the response of I. pini to ipsdienol. The occurrence of cis-verbenol, trans-verbenol and verbenone in emergent I. pini, and verbenone and 2-phenylethanol in emergent D. ponderosae suggests that these compounds may inhibit aggregation and induce dispersal following emergence. Termination of aggregation in D. ponderosae appears to depend on the production of frontalin in combination with changes in the relative ratios of verbenone, exo-brevicomin, trans-verbenol and 2-phenylethanol. In I. pini, the cessation of ipsdienol production by males is probably the main factor in terminating aggregation.
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