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Chemical defense of a rove beetle (Creophilus maxillosus)

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Abstract

The abdominal defensive glands ofC. maxillosus secrete a mixture (70μg/beetle) of isoamyl alcohol (I), isoamyl acetate (II), iridodial (III), actinidine (IV), dihydronepetalactone (VE), and (E)-8-oxocitronellyl acetate (X). When disturbed, the beetle everts the glands and revolves the abdomen so as to wipe the glands against the offending agent. Fecal fluid is commonly emitted at the same time and may become added to the glandular material. Ants (Formica exsectoides) are effectively fended off by the beetle and were shown in bioassays (Monomorium destructor) to be repelled by the four major components of the secretion (II, III, X, VE); the principal component (VE) was the most active. Some anatomical features of the glands are described.

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Paper No. 69 of the seriesDefense Mechanisms of Arthropods. Paper No. 68 is: Eisner, T., and Aneshansley, D.J. 1982.Science 215:83.

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Jefson, M., Meinwald, J., Nowicki, S. et al. Chemical defense of a rove beetle (Creophilus maxillosus). J Chem Ecol 9, 159–180 (1983). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00987779

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00987779

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