Journal of Chemical Ecology

, 37:899

Attraction Modulated by Spacing of Pheromone Components and Anti-attractants in a Bark Beetle and a Moth

  • Martin N. Andersson
  • Muhammad Binyameen
  • Medhat M. Sadek
  • Fredrik Schlyter


Orientation for insects in olfactory landscapes with high semiochemical diversity may be a challenging task. The partitioning of odor plumes into filaments that are interspersed with pockets of ‘clean air’ may help filament discrimination and upwind flight to attractive sources in the face of inhibitory signals. We studied the effect of distance between odor sources on trap catches of the beetle, Ips typographus, and the moth, Spodoptera littoralis. Insects were tested both to spatially separated pheromone components [cis-verbenol and 2-methyl-3-buten-2-ol for Ips; (Z,E)-9,11-tetradecadienyl acetate and (Z,E)-9,12-tetradecadienyl acetate for Spodoptera], and to separated pheromone and anti-attractant sources [non-host volatile (NHV) blend for Ips; (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetate for Spodoptera]. Trap catch data were complemented with simulations of plume structure and plume overlap from two separated sources using a photo ionization detector and soap bubble generators. Trap catches of the beetle and the moth were both affected when odor sources in the respective traps were increasingly separated. However, this effect on trap catch occurred at smaller (roughly by an order of magnitude) odor source separation distances for the moth than for the beetle. This may reflect differences between the respective olfactory systems and central processing. For both species, the changes in trap catches in response to separation of pheromone components occurred at similar spacing distances as for separation of pheromone and anti-attractant sources. Overlap between two simulated plumes depended on distance between the two sources. In addition, the number of detected filaments and their concentration decreased with downwind distance. This implies that the response to separated odor sources in the two species might take place under different olfactory conditions. Deploying multiple sources of anti-attractant around a pheromone trap indicated long-distance (meter scale) effects of NHV on the beetle and a potential use for NHV in forest protection.

Key Words

Odor-source spacing Semiochemical diversity hypothesis Plume structure Antagonist Anti-attractant Non-host volatiles Field trapping Photo ionization detector Coleoptera Curculionidae Scolytinae Scolytidae Lepidoptera Noctuidae 

Supplementary material

10886_2011_9995_Fig7_ESM.jpg (2.6 mb)
Figure S1

A) The Lindgren multiple-funnel trap, extended to 19-funnel size, used in vertical spacing experiments with Ips typographus. Dispensers are positioned under grey cups. B) The green funnel trap used in spacing experiments with Spodoptera littoralis. C) Pipe trap surrounded by eight non-host volatile sources used in the anti-attractant background experiments with I. typographus. (JPEG 2667 kb)

Video 1

The Ips typographus wind vane Lindgren trap (horizontal source spacing) in action. Dispensers are positioned under grey cups. (WMV 1857 kb)

Video 2

Plume overlap at 48 cm vertical spacing distance. Distance between black poles is 1 m. (WMV 2036 kb)

Video 3

Plume overlap was variable in constant wind speed at the 112 cm vertical spacing distance. Distance between black poles is 1 m. (WMV 1911 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin N. Andersson
    • 1
    • 3
  • Muhammad Binyameen
    • 1
  • Medhat M. Sadek
    • 2
  • Fredrik Schlyter
    • 1
  1. 1.Chemical Ecology, Department of Plant Protection BiologySwedish University of Agricultural SciencesAlnarpSweden
  2. 2.Department of Zoology, Faculty of ScienceAssiut UniversityAssiutEgypt
  3. 3.Department of BiologyLund UniversityLundSweden

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