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Deterred oviposition response of Monochamus alternatus (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) to oviposition scars occupied by eggs

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1 The oviposition behaviour and response of Monochamus alternatus females to oviposition scars were investigated in the laboratory.

2 Prior to oviposition, females gnawed at the bark surface of Pinus densiflora bolts to make a wound. Then females turned their bodies 180° to position their ovipositors over the wounds and inserted them under the bark through the wounds. After an oviposition, a jelly was deposited while the ovipositor was still inserted. The females then withdrew their ovipositors and rubbed the oviposition scars with the tips of their abdomens.

3 When searching females encountered oviposition scars, they stopped walking and drummed the surface and inside of the oviposition scars with their maxillary and labial palpi.

4 Eighty-six percent of females left oviposition scars containing single eggs after the palpation. By contrast, when females encountered oviposition scars containing no eggs, 76% of them began to gnaw at the scars and 64% deposited single eggs. The response to artificial oviposition scars was similar to that to vacant oviposition scars made by the females.

5 The results of various observations and experiments showed that the females could recognize oviposition scars and discriminate the scars occupied by single eggs from vacant ones, and suggested that the palpation of oviposition scars was the critical discrimination behaviour, indicating mediation by chemical cues.

Keywords: Cerambycid beetle; chemical marking; egg recognition; oviposition behaviour; oviposition deterrence

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: , Japan 2: Department of Environmental Studies, Faculty of Integrated Arts and Sciences, Hiroshima University, Higashi-Hiroshima, Hiroshima 739-852

Publication date: August 1, 2000


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