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Sexual communication of Spodoptera frugipera from west Africa: adaptation of an invasive species and implications for pest management
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The pest species Spodoptera frugiperda, which is native to North and South America, has invaded Africa in 2016. The species consists of two strains, the corn-strain and rice-strain, which differ in their sexual communication. When we investigated populations from Benin and Nigeria, consisting of corn-strain and rice-corn-hybrid descendants, we found no strain-specific sexual communication differences. Both genotypes exhibited the same pheromone composition, consisting of around 97% (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetate (Z9–14:Ac), 2% (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate (Z7–12:Ac), and 1% (Z)-9-dodecenyl acetate (Z9–12:Ac), they had similar electrophysiological responses, and all mated around three hours into scotophase. However, we found geographic variation between African and American populations. The sex pheromone of African corn-strain and hybrid descendant females was similar to American rice-strain females and showed higher percentages of the male-attracting minor component Z7–12:Ac. In addition, African males exhibited the highest antennal sensitivity towards Z7–12:Ac, while American males showed highest sensitivity towards the major pheromone component Z9–14:Ac. Increasing the production of and response to the critical minor component Z7–12:Ac may reduce communication interference with other African Spodoptera species that share the same major pheromone component. The implications of our results on pheromone-based pest management strategies are discussed.
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Permanent link to this itemhttps://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12478/6835
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