Monitoring the European pine sawfly with pheromone traps in maturing Scots pine stands
• During 1989–93, field studies were conducted in Finland to develop a method based on pheromone traps to monitor and forecast population levels of the European pine sawfly (Neodiprion sertifer Geoffr.) and tree defoliation.
• Three traps per site were baited with 100 µg of the N. sertifer sex pheromone, the acetate ester of (2S,3S,7S)-3,7-dimethyl-2-pentadecanol (diprionol), in maturing pine stands in southern and central Finland. In addition, three different dosages (1, 10 and 100 µg) of the pheromone were tested in 1991–92.
• The highest number of males was observed in traps baited with the highest dose. On average, there was a 10-fold increase in trap catch between lure doses.
• Density of overwintering eggs was used to evaluate the effectiveness of pheromone traps in predicting sawfly populations. The proportion of healthy overwintering eggs was determined each year. A model based on the number of current shoots on sample trees, diameter at breast height and tree height was formulated to estimate eggs per hectare.
• Linear regression analysis produced high coefficients of determination between number of males in traps and density of total eggs in the subsequent generation, when populations were at peak densities. The relationships were not significant for low population densities. The results indicate a risk of moderate defoliation when the seasonal trap catch is 800–1000 males per trap or higher.