Persistence of the Gypsy Moth Pheromone, Disparlure, in the Environment in Various Climates


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Mating disruption techniques are used in pest control for many species of insects, yet little is known regarding the environmental persistence of these pheromones following their application and if persistence is affected by climatic conditions. We first studied the persistent effect of ground applications of Luretape GM in Lymantria dispar (L) mating disruption in VA, USA in 2006. The removal of Luretape GM indicated that the strong persistent effect of disparlure in the environment reported by previous studies is produced by residual pheromone in the dispensers as opposed to environmental contamination. In 2010 and 2011, we evaluated the efficacy of two formulations, Disrupt II and SPLAT GMTM, in VA and WI, USA, which presented different climatic conditions. In plots treated in WI and VA, male moth catches in pheromone-baited traps were reduced in the year of treatment and one year after the pheromone applications relative to untreated controls. However, similar first- and second-year effects of pheromone treatments in VA and WI suggest that the release rate over one and two years was the same across markedly different climates. Future applications that use liquid or biodegradable formulations of synthetic pheromones could reduce the amount of persistence in the environment.



Lymantria dispar, pheromone, mating disruption, environmental persistence


Onufrieva, Ksenia S.; Thorpe, Kevin W.; Hickman, Andrea D.; Leonard, Donna S.; Roberts, E. A.; Tobin, Patrick C. 2013. "Persistence of the Gypsy Moth Pheromone, Disparlure, in the Environment in Various Climates." Insects 2013, 4(1), 104-116; doi:10.3390/insects4010104.