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Report, 2010

Odours, potato and insects : host finding and reproduction behaviour

Karlsson, Miriam Frida

Abstract

Plant odours can give important information about the specie and these emitted chemical messengers mediate host-finding behaviour, to the insects living on potato. During the development of the potato crop, lasting approximately tree months, the insects described in this paper, has to find the crop. They then chose a part of the potato; leaves, tubers or flowers, where they feed, hide, mate or oviposit. Host plant selection or host preference is not only governed by nutritional quality but also by environmental factors and reproduction success. The synergistic effect of odours from conspecifics and plants can enhance the attractiveness and hence the survival of the specie. Pheromone and kairomone response from two Coleopterans, tree Lepidoptera and two Homopteran insects, that are severe pest on potato, are here described as well as their behaviour towards potato crop. Knowledge about their response to semiochemicals gives indications of how to develop future crop protection management. The enhancement of sex attraction induced by host odors suggests that more effective traps can be devised for management of insect pests

Keywords

chemical ecology; host selection

Published in

Introductory Paper at the Faculty of Landscape Planning, Horticulture and Agricultural Science
2010, number: 2010:1
Publisher: Faculty of Landscape Planning, Horticulture and Agricultural Science, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences