Effect of Pheromone-Mediated Mating Disruption on Pest Population Density of Maruca vitrata (Fabricius) (Crambidae: Lepidoptera)

Insects. 2020 Aug 21;11(9):E558. doi: 10.3390/insects11090558.


The legume pod borer (Maruca vitrata) is one of the most serious legume pests due to its wide host range and high damage potential. Pheromone components on M. vitrata have been previously identified, allowing research on more environmentally friendly IPM tools for its control. M. vitrata produces a three-component pheromone blend containing (E, E)-10,12-hexadecadienal (major), (E, E)-10,12-hexadecadienol (minor), (E)-10-hexadecenal (minor). This study focused on the efficacy of synthetic pheromone lures and their blend components for mating disruption in M. vitrata. Under laboratory conditions, the mating behavior of M. vitrata pairs was observed from 18:00 to 02:00 h in an interval of 20 min to assess the efficacy of different pheromone lures. The scotophase behavior results show that the complete pheromone blend (E, E)-10,12-hexadecadienal + (E, E)-10,12-hexadecadienol + (E)-10-hexadecenal with a blend ratio of 1:1:1 effectively disrupted mating. The impact on mating disruption was evident from the lower fecundity and egg hatch/eclosion. The same lures were evaluated in a small-scale caged field study. The results show that the pheromone blend of (E, E)-10,12-hexadecadienal + (E, E)-10,12-hexadecadienol + (E)-10-hexadecenal in a1:1:1 ratio significantly disrupted the normal mating, leading to lower flower and pod damage and higher mung bean yield.

Keywords: integrated pest management; legume pod borer; mating disruption; mungbean; pheromone blend.