In New Jersey, the oriental beetle
has become the most important white grub species infesting
entire sections of fields if uncontrolled. Permeating the air with the
sex pheromone may disrupt oriental beetle communication between opposite
sexes. Mating disruption is an environmentally friendly and selective control
strategy that can be implemented into current pest management programs in
blueberries for oriental beetle control.
Dr. S. Polavarapu (my predecessor at the Marucci Center) demonstrated in field trials the feasibility of oriental beetle mating suppression using a sprayable formulation of the sex pheromone. Sprayable formulations of the oriental beetle pheromone,
being a ketone, do not qualify for EPA tolerance exemptions on food crops
unlike formulations using other arthropod pheromones containing acetate,
and aldehyde moieties. Alternatively, arthropod pheromones formulated
in retrievable polymeric dispensers have been granted tolerance exemption for
use on food crops.
My team is conducting on-farm demonstrations to assess the
effectiveness of low, marketable-comparable, pheromone rates using retrievable
dispensers for oriental beetle mating disruption. We are also studying oriental beetle behavior.
- Dean Polk (Rutgers University)
- Jan Meneley (Ag Bio Inc.)
- Agenor Mafra-Neto (ISCA Technologies)
Rodriguez-Saona, C., Polk, D., Holdcraft, R., Chinnasamy, D., and Mafra-Neto, A. 2010. SPLAT-OB reveals competitive attraction as a mechanism of mating disruption in oriental beetle. Environ. Entomol. 39: 1980-1989.
Rodriguez-Saona, C., Polk, D.F., and Barry, J.D. 2009. Optimization of pheromone rates for effective mating disruption of oriental beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) in commercial blueberries. J. Econ. Entomol. 102: 659-669.