Evidence for a multicomponent sex pheromone in the yellowheaded spruce sawfly
The existence of a female-produced sex pheromone in the yellowheaded spruce sawfly,Pikonema alaskensis (Rohwer) (Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae) was demonstrated by field and greenhouse bioassays. Virgin females, their empty cocoons (with which they were confined during handling procedures), and the hexane extract of these cocoons were attractive in the field. The only Florisil fraction of this extract consistently attractive by itself was that eluted with hexane, but three, more polar fractions (eluted with 5%, 25%, and 50% ether in hexane) each synergized the hexane fraction, increasing bioassay responses 10–30 times. Fractions derived directly from virgin females yielded comparable results. The greenhouse data corroborated the field data, except that the 5% ether-hexane fraction, while very synergistic in the field, was consistently inactive in the greenhouse.
Key wordsSex pheromone bioassay synergism sawfly Hymenoptera Tenthredinidae Pikonema alaskensis experimental design
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