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Semiochemicals in Mealybugs

  • N. Bakthavatsalam
Chapter

Abstract

Females of several species of mealybugs produce pheromones which attract the males. Abdominal glands were suspected to be the source of pheromones in various species. Most of the mealybug pheromones are carboxyl esters of monoterpene alcohols and racemic mixtures were also observed to be effective than enantiomers. Identification and synthesis of pheromones for economically important species like Planococcus citri (Risso), Pseudococcus comstocki (Kuwana), Phenacoccus madeirensis Green, and Maconellicoccus hirsutus (Green) were established. Green delta, Pheroco IIB and Pherocon V were some of the traps used successfully for the management of mealybugs. Pheromones were successfully used for monitoring the populations of Pl. citri, Pseudococcus maritimus (Ehrhorn), and Saccharicoccus sacchari(Cockerell). Sprable microencapsule formulation of pheromone effectively reduced the incidence of M. hirsutus to 3-4% in treated plots compared to 9 t0 11 % in control plots. Creation of "male vacuum" by advocating male annihilation technique through installation of pheromone traps at the edge of fields was suggested as successful mass trapping method for Pl. citri . Rate of parasitism by Anagyrus pseudococci (Girault)was improved in Pl. ficus through the use of pheromones.

A semiochemical (from Greek semeon meaning “signal”) is a generic term used for a chemical substance or mixture that carries a message for purpose of communication. Semiochemical communication can be divided into two broad classes: communication between individuals of the same species (intraspecific) or communication between different species (interspecific). It is usually used in the field of chemical ecology to encompass pheromones, allomones, kairomones, attractants, and repellents. Many insects, including parasitic insects, use semiochemicals, which are natural chemicals released by an organism that affect the behaviors of other individuals. Pheromones are intraspecific signals that aid in finding mates, food and habitat resources, warning of enemies, and avoiding competition. Interspecific signals known as allomones and kairomones have similar functions.

Keywords

Virgin Female Pheromone Trap Mating Disruption Mass Trapping Mealybug Species 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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© Springer India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Bureau of Agriculturally Important InsectsBangaloreIndia

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