The roles of olfaction and vision in host-plant finding by the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella
Couty, A., van Emden, H. F., Perry, J. N., Hardie, J., Pickett, J. A. and Wadhams, L. J. (2006) The roles of olfaction and vision in host-plant finding by the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella. Physiological Entomology, 31 (2). pp. 134-145. ISSN 0307-6962
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3032.2006.00499.x
The relative roles of olfaction and vision in the crepuscular host-finding process of a major lepidopteran pest of cruciferous crops, the diamondback moth Plutella xylostella are investigated in a series of laboratory and semi-field experiments. Flying female moths use volatile plant chemical cues to locate and to promote landing on their host, even in complex mixed-crop environments in large cages. Multiple regression analysis shows that both the plant position (front, middle or back rows) and the type of plant (host plant, nonhost plant) are needed to explain the distribution of insects in such a mixed-crop situation. This strong plant position effect indicates that, when host plants are present in a mixture, foraging P. xylostella are more likely to alight on the first row of the plants. The findings are discussed with regard to current theories of host-plant location by phytophagous insects and the possible implications for integrated pest management.