Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Lures To Doom Crop-Damaging Caterpillars

Date:
November 23, 2004
Source:
USDA / Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Enticing new lures developed by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists could make backyard gardens, fruit orchards and crop fields places of no return for pesky caterpillars.

Graduate student Leo Camelo sets up a killing station for alfalfa looper moths in a potato field plot.
Credit: Photo by Peggy Greb. Courtesy of USDA / Agricultural Research Service

Enticing new lures developed by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists could make backyard gardens, fruit orchards and crop fields places of no return for pesky caterpillars.

The lures, derived from molasses and floral odors, tantalize both male and female moths--the caterpillars' adult stage--with the promise of nectar. Instead, the insects fly into the opening of a lure-dispensing trap, never to escape.

Peter Landolt, research leader at the ARS Vegetable Insects Research Unit in Wapato, Wash., and Connie Smithhisler, a chemist there, developed the lures as an alternative to chemically controlling the pests--loopers, cutworms, fruitworms, armyworms and corn earworms.

According to Landolt, most currently used lures act on the male moth's sense of smell. These lures work by dispensing a synthetic version of the female moth's chemical sex attractant, or pheromone, which the males find irresistible. Saturating the air with synthetic pheromone confuses the male moths, disrupting their ability to find mates. Such lures are also used to monitor the pests' movements and whereabouts. But most lures offer no way of keeping tabs on the female moths, according to Landolt.

He and Smithhisler overcame the problem by identifying, testing and synthesizing blends of volatile compounds from molasses that attract both sexes of moths. In another "unisex" lure formulation, the researchers combined various floral scents, including those from Oregon grape, honeysuckle and Gaura flowers. The molasses-derived lure is now commercially available for garden use as the product SMARTrap. The floral based lures are in their second year of field tests. In one trial, by Washington State University graduate student Leonardo Camelo, who works at the ARS lab, use of the floral lures in a "killing station" reduced the number of alfalfa loopers by 75 percent.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA / Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA / Agricultural Research Service. "New Lures To Doom Crop-Damaging Caterpillars." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 November 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041122092458.htm>.
USDA / Agricultural Research Service. (2004, November 23). New Lures To Doom Crop-Damaging Caterpillars. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041122092458.htm
USDA / Agricultural Research Service. "New Lures To Doom Crop-Damaging Caterpillars." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041122092458.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Will Living Glue Be A Thing?

Will Living Glue Be A Thing?

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) Using proteins derived from mussels, engineers at MIT have made a supersticky underwater adhesive. They're now looking to make "living glue." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Tiger Kills Man at India Zoo

Raw: Tiger Kills Man at India Zoo

AP (Sep. 23, 2014) A white tiger killed a young man who climbed over a fence at the New Delhi zoo and jumped into the animal's enclosure on Tuesday, a spokesman said. (Sept. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

AFP (Sep. 22, 2014) The best funny internet cat videos are honoured at LA's Feline Film Festival. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Washed-Up 'Alien Hairballs' Are Actually Algae

Washed-Up 'Alien Hairballs' Are Actually Algae

Newsy (Sep. 22, 2014) Green balls of algae washed up on Sydney, Australia's Dee Why Beach. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins