Orientational responses of Chilo partellus (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) larvae to visual and olfactory stimuli from leaves of two cultivars of maize Zea mays
The effect of visual and olfactory stimuli from leaves of two maize cultivars, Basilocal (susceptible) and Kisan (resistant), in eliciting orientational responses by first instar Chilo partellus (Swinhoe) larvae was investigated in the laboratory. The polar and non-polar chemical constituents of these cultivars were extracted in methanol and hexane, respectively. Orientational preference of the larvae for the leaf whorls and hexane extracts of Basilocal leaves was significantly greater than that for Kisan. The methanol extracts of the two cultivars were, however, equally effective in eliciting larval attraction. These observations imply that the non-polar fraction of maize leaves is more effective than the polar fraction in eliciting larval orientation in C. partellus. Moreover, certain chemicals of Kisan leaves, extractable in hexane, elicited larval repulsion whereas those of Basilocal leaves elicited larval attraction. Identification of the chemicals eliciting attraction or repulsion would be valuable in a management programme for this economically important insect pest of gramineous crops.
Key wordsChilo partellus larvae orientation Zea mays kairomones
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