Some Personal Recollections of Pheromone Research in Australia in the 1970s
Ecological Issues Relating to Moth Pest Management in the Field
The Journal of Chemical Ecology, particularly in its early years was devoted almost exclusively to research on pheromones. In the 1970s, considerable advances were being made in understanding the mechanisms underlying pheromone-mediated behavior, particularly in laboratory environments (e.g. R.J. Bartell at CSIRO Australia), as well as the chemical characterization of pheromones and recognizing the importance of minor components. However, there was little ecologically-based research at that time on the impacts of modifying pheromone-mediated behavior on the population dynamics of target pests, particularly in terms of validating the quantitative contributions of mating disruption or mass trapping to pest abundance within and between seasons. Among several reasons for this was that few sex pheromones of lepidopteran pests had been characterized and synthesised. However, in 1969, Wendell Roelofs published the identity of the...
These notes refer to my own recollections of 30 years ago of just one area of work, but I wish also to recognise the research work of all the CSIRO pheromone team, including the late Roger Bartell, Richard Vickers, Tom Bellas, Chris Whittle, Eric Rumbo, Mike Lacey and Louse Lawrence, as well as sabbatical scientists: Harry Shorey, Albert Minks, Miklos Toth, and the late Shmuel Gothilf, and, lastly, the support of technical staff including Stan Bakker and Kim Pullen.